To her friends, she was known as “Miss America,” because of her cheerful personality and her bounce when she walked.
Miranda Dermanelian, 25, liked to try on hats and take silly pictures. The mother of two was remembered as bubbly, and as someone who had been through heartache and tragedy, but found a way to stay positive.
Dermanelian died March 14 after driving into Fall Creek near Binford Boulevard and Allisonville Road in Indianapolis. The Indiana Department of Natural Resources is investigating the accident.
She was a 2007 graduate of Indian Creek High School and a former Morgantown resident. When she died, she was living in Indianapolis and working as a cosmetologist.
Tori Hague, of Carmel, became close friends with Dermanelian in cheerleading in high school. They remained friends after, even when Dermanelian joined the Army and Hague went to college.
As Indian Creek cheerleaders, they traveled to Disney World together three years in a row. Dermanelian loved running from costumed character to costumed character to snap pictures, and trying on Mickey Mouse ear hats and crowns, Hague said.
They last saw each other about 18 months ago. They stayed in touch by meeting for an occasional dinner or sending a quick text message, Hague said.
Dermanelian would send text messages to say, “Hey. Thinking about you. Love you.”
She had written a letter to Hague and framed it for her during Hague’s senior year of high school. Hague still has the letter.
“She was just extremely thoughtful. A letter about all the things she loved about me,” she said.
Dermanelian’s high school boyfriend died about nine years ago in a car accident, and her mother died in a crash in 2006, Hague said.
“It’s sometimes a little bit eerie. She had a hard time with that. I think she struggled for the rest of her life with her mom passing,” she said. “She saw a lot of heartache, and still found a way to smile through it.”