CHICAGO — An off-duty police officer who died early Saturday after the SUV she was driving crashed on the Chicago Skyway was one of three sisters to wear a badge, and was on her way to celebrate with friends when she died.
Shaunda Bond, 31, was driving inbound near 81st Street by Avalon Park Friday when her SUV hit a concrete barrier and rolled at about 10:40 p.m, police said.
Bond, of the 4100 block of South Michigan Avenue in Bronzeville, was the only person in the SUV when it crashed, according to police.
Bond's first cousin, Daphne Flores, said Bond was on her way to meet Flores and several other women for a celebratory dinner at Patron's Hacienda, 316 W. Erie St, in River North.
One of the women had recently gotten a new job, and Bond was slated to join a tactical team in her district, police spokesman Officer Daniel O’Brien confirmed.
Bond was “very, very excited” about the promotion, Flores said, so when she didn’t show, Flores began to worry.
“We were calling, and she wasn’t answering,” Flores said as she pulled out her phone and read a text message stamped at 11:26 p.m. “The last text I sent her, I said, ‘Where the hell are you? I’m worried.’”
Bond was pronounced dead at 1:55 a.m. Saturday at the Cook County Medical Examiner's Office, according to authorities.
Flores, 43, said the “devastating” accident was made even worse by the fact Bond was scheduled to leave for Thailand Sunday morning.
“It’s just one of those places she’s always wanted to go,” Flores said. “She was going with a friend, and they had a beautiful resort picked out. It was one of those vacations of a lifetime.”
Flores and Bond, whose mothers are sisters, were raised in the same house in West Pullman. Flores called Bond “the life of the party,” describing her as someone who was happy, upbeat and caring.
As a child, Bond wanted to be a teacher or a police officer when she grew up, Flores said.
“When she got that call saying she’d been accepted into the police academy, she could not have been happier,” Flores said. "She loved helping people."
According to authorities, Bond joined the force in 2009 and worked in the South Chicago district.
Bond has two sisters: Wendy Bond, a Chicago police officer, and Sherry Bond, a Cook County Sheriff.
Flores said countless police officers dropped by Bond's parents’ home Saturday, bringing with them food, pastries, coffee and well wishes.
“She was such a sweetheart,” Flores said, as she pored over phone videos of Bond dancing and laughing with family members. "We are a very close-knit family. We will definitely feel a void.”