Friends and family are remembering the life of Barbara Bongiovanni, who lost her life in the deadly Avon Mountain crash 10 years ago.
Bongiovanni would be retired now and turning 65 in September.
On July 29, 2005, Bongiovanni was one of the four drivers killed in the horrifying crash at the foot of the mountain.
"She was killed instantly. I can still visualize it. I can only imagine what she must have went through. What all those people went through, those poor people. 10 years already,” said Gilda Bongiovanni, Barbara’s mother-in-law.
Not a day passes that Gilda Bongiovanni said she doesn’t think about her daughter-in-law.
Gilda Bongiovanni was home watching the news when her daughter called with the devastating updated.
"And that poor man, that drove the truck right into her. He didn't know what to do. They told me he was screaming,” Gilda Bongiovanni said.
Barbara was headed to St. Francis Hospital in Hartford early that day. She was a collection specialist and treated everyone, friends, family and even strangers with kindness.
"I believe my mother made a difference in many peoples' lives, by way she would talk to them with understanding, compassion and respect,” said Barbara’s son Vincent Bongiovanni in a phone interview.
He lives in North Carolina and was a miracle baby after his parents tried to have children for 10 years.
Every year, Gilda Bongiovanni honors Barbara’s memory inside a Winsted church.
"I can't believe it happened. It should never have happened,” she said.
"I definitely feel an emptiness. I definitely feel a little bit robbed of what many get to have, it's kind of sad. I don't have a mom and dad to pick up and call when I am struggling and I just want to talk to them,” Vincent Bongiovanni said.
As a teen, Vincent Bongiovanni said he dabbled in drugs, alcohol and breaking the law before turning his life around. Now he works two jobs to pay for his past, but tries to live life the way his mother did.
"I love my mother, I love her a lot. And I know she loved me. There was no bitterness, no anger, no nothing,” he said.
He was getting ready for work on the day his mother died when a Torrington police officer and family friend knocked on his door to announce his mother had been killed in the crash.
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