Updated 08/10/2012 02:36 PM
One year after triple fatal, memorial held for victims
A memorial service was held for women who were killed in Voorheesville one year ago. Carol Lansing, Rose Marie Hume, and Fran Pallozzi were hit by a minivan in front of the St. Matthew's Church as they were getting ready to go on a guided walk with their walking group. Our Megan Cruz was at the service and has more.
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VOORHEESVILLE, N.Y. -- The bells at St. Matthew's Church tolled three times at 8:30 a.m. Friday, each for the three women who were killed right in front exactly one year ago.
"I was putting suntan lotion on," said Doug Reynolds. He was a member of the same walking group as the women. "It was a beautiful, sunny, warm day. And we were looking forward to another normal walk."
But the group of walkers never got to go on their 9 a.m. Wednesday walk. Around 8:45 a.m., a minivan came speeding down the street, went off the road, eventually crashing into the church and killing Carol Lansing, 66, Rosemarie Hume, 79, and Frances Pallozzi, 81, who were standing outside.
Family, friends, and members of the walking group gathered at St. Matthew's for a memorial mass to mark the anniversary.
"We'll be rethinking that particular day, but also the better parts of other Wednesdays when we'd walk together," said Reynolds.
During the mass, Reverend Tom Chevalier presented the Lansing, Hume, and Pallozzi families with crosses that hung on the church's memorial wall for the past year. It's a tradition they reserve for parishioners, which the women were not.
"Unfortunately, the tragedy happened here and they became part of our family," said Ellie Dorn, a parishioner of St. Matthew's. "And we want to continue to let them know that we are with them in spirit and in prayer and we embrace them as part of our community."
The sheriff's office says the woman behind the wheel was 55-year-old LuAnn Burgess. Earlier this week, a grand jury indicted her on nine counts in connection with last summer's fatal crash.
Back then, Burgess said her flip flop got stuck under the gas pedal, and subsequent toxicology reports found she was taking three prescription medications for Parkinson's at the time.
Reynolds said, "Whether it was an accident - totally and completely - or whether it was a criminal act, is for others to decide."
Instead, he and everyone else here says all the days since the accident have been about remembering their loved ones and supporting the families they've left behind.