Cory Abdulla answered the doorbell at his parents Brampton home to find a delivery man with an floral arrangement. The house is filled with flowers and baskets of gifts that have been pouring in, since his mother 67-year-old Clarice Abdulla died two weeks ago. The house is also filled with baby toys, a reminder of the greatest joy of her life. He first grandchild, a boy who she will never see grow up.
“None of our kids will ever know their grandmother. She was just everything to us and without her it doesn’t seem real and it doesn’t seem just,” said Abdulla still in shock about the senseless loss of his mother.
Earlier this week, York Regional police announced they had charged 36 year old Gianmarco di Luciano of Aurora with impaired driving causing death, dangerous driving causing death and failing to comply with a breath demand causing death.
It was 10:45 pm on Christmas Day when investigators were called to a collision at Major Mackenzie Drive and Fossil Hill Road in Vaughan. When officers and paramedics arrived, they found a black Hyundai Santa Fe that had been broadsided by a black Toyota Sequoia.
The driver of the Sequoia was arrested at the scene. The three occupants of the Santa Fe were taken to hospital with serious but non-life threatening injuries.
Cory Abdulla said his mother, father and older brother were just a block away from his sister’s house where they had been visiting Clarice’s daughter and six month old grandson, when the crash happened. “I left my sister’s house and I got home and received a call from her saying my family had been involved in an accident with a suspected drunk driver”.
Abdulla said not long after being taken to hospital, the condition of his mother, who was a passenger in the back seat behind the driver, worsened. She was never released from hospital and died on January 24th.
“It was Christmas and it was not late. This was a hundred percent preventable. How does this even happen in this day and age with ride sharing apps and just the media attention towards impaired driving?” said Abdulla.
York Regional Police Constable Laura Nicholle said two people were killed on York region roads over the holiday period. The other, a 68-year-old man near Elgin Mills Road and Ninth Line in Markham.
“We increase our ride check stops throughout the festive season, over the holidays. And we sadly had two people pass away as a result of impaired driving,” said Nicolle.
Court records obtained by Global News find that di Luciano was released from custody on an undertaking. A condition of his release that he not be behind the wheel of any motor vehicle. He will be back in court in March.