Ruangsuwana family releases statement on one year anniversary of daughter’s death in Brighton car crash

Local News

BRIGHTON, N.Y. (WROC) — One year ago today, 9-year-old Mila Ruangsuwana was killed in a car crash in Brighton. Today, her family released a statement through URMC, both remembering their daughter, and updating the media on the state of their son’s injuries.

They’re also asking people to donate to their favorite charity to Mila’s name to remember her.

Background:

20-year-old Ninoshka Vazquez-Ruiz of Rochester was charged with two counts of criminally negligent homicide, and one count of assault in the third degree and several traffic tickets including speeding (going 63 m.p.h. in a 30 m.p.h. zone), failure to keep right and unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle.

Ruangsuwana and 45-year-old Elmira Kamilevna Hall were killed and 2-year-old Evan Ruangsuwana suffered serious injuries on November 27. While they walking on Edgewood Avenue, Vazquez-Ruiz was heading south, left the roadway, hit a telephone pole and struck the babysitter and the children.

According to the police report, Vazquez-Ruiz was driving home from appointment with her one-month-old son in a car seat in the rear of the sedan when she drove off the road.

According to court records, Vazquez-Ruiz told police she remembers “feeling dizzy” and “not strong” prior to the crash. The reports states; “She went on to say that she closed her eyes to see if things would get better. The next thing she knew the accident had happened.”

Most recently, Vazquez-Ruiz’s court appearance in February was delayed.

Here is the full statement provided by the family:

“Many people have been reaching out in recent weeks hoping for some good news. And while some things have improved, some have gotten harder. Unfortunately, this year has not brought as much progress for our little boy as we hoped and prayed for. His injuries were so devastating, that now at three years old he still has not caught up with the skills he had a year ago.  Despite his improvement over the past year, today he still does not walk independently, does not speak, and struggles to learn and retain new information. Every day we celebrate his achievements, while also mourning the loss of the life he was meant to have.

“Grief has no expiration date; it feeds itself on millions of daily reminders that go unnoticed by outsiders. It is also a remarkably isolating experience.  We lost friends in the past year, but also found some new ones. I am grateful to those who are not afraid to reach out, even if it is painful and scary, who can find strength to just be present when there are no comforting updates. We are grateful to Mila’s friends who remember and love her. To the many dedicated therapists and teachers working with Evan so that he continues to improve. To the wonderful teachers, coaches, and friends in the community who ‘adopted’ Lily this year and made sure that she has ‘happy’ childhood experiences —playdates, baking nights, birthday parties — in spite of everything that happened.

“To celebrate Mila’s life this holiday season, we are asking friends and family to make a donation in her honor to a charity or cause of their choosing. Knowing that Mila’s name is being spoken out loud and that her presence continues through acts of kindness is the best possible gift you can give us.

Sincerely,

Irina Statnikova and Rangsal Ruangsuwana”

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