Shadia Faraj, the mother of one of two cousins killed in a Detroit car crash on May 17, died of a heart attack on June 19 in Lebanon, according to family members. She was 41.
Her son Mahmoud Bazzi, 20, and Hussein El-Zaghir, 26, were killed when a speeding SUV allegedly ran a yield sign and crashed into the side of their Chevrolet Malibu on Detroit's west side.
Family and friends said Faraj died of a broken heart.
She is survived by son Ali Bazzi, 19, and daughter Malaak Bazzi, 16.
Ali Bazzi said she had the heart attack while having photographic mementos of her late son made at a Lebanese studio.
"People use expressions like 'they'd die for their kids.' She really did die for my brother," Bazzi said.
He said his mother had heart problems in the past, but that the death of her son exacerbated health problems.
Bazzi said the deaths have taken an immense toll on the family, and that widespread community support and sympathy have been appreciated, but of little help.
"I've never seen this happen, where a brother and a cousin go and then, right after that, a mother," he said.
"Everybody's feeling for us, but really, nobody knows how my family feels... But I got a little sister to worry about. We have to stay strong."
He described his late mother as a youthful woman who younger family members often turned to.
"She was the one to talk to in the family," he said "She was like a kid. She was always joking with us. She hung out with us."
Tony Al-Khal, of Livonia, who owned the home Faraj rented, said he was shocked to hear of the death of his tenant and friend.
He described her as a great storyteller and hostess who treated him like a brother.
"I know she's in a better world now," he said, "because this person, she never hurt nobody. She never said a bad thing about anybody."
A seventh-day memorial service for Faraj and a 40th-day memorial service for her son and nephew, falling on the exact same day, are scheduled for Saturday, June 27 at the Islamic Institute of Knowledge, 6345 Schaefer Road in Dearborn.