Nearly a month after a young mother died after being run over by a San Francisco Recreation and Parks vehicle while sunbathing at a Bernal Heights park with her baby daughter and dog, the community held a vigil to demand action to prevent similar tragedies. Jean Elle reports.
Vegar Svanemyr's wife, Christy, was run over and killed by a city worker in San Francisco's Holly Park a month ago.
The now single father said he drives by the park now and then, and is relieved to see neighbors are keeping a memorial for his wife filled with fresh flowers and candles.
Her friends organized a vigil for the 35-year-old new mother Thursday night, wanting to remember a woman they said radiated love.
Vegar said he didn't want to attend but changed his mind.
"I think it's something she (Christy) would have wanted me to do," he said.
Vegar spoke slowly as breathless supporters listened with tears in their eyes. He didn't talk about being a victim or about justice for Christy. He talked about being grateful for the out pouring of support for him and 11-month-old Isa, and about love.
Standing under the tree where his wife was killed, Vegar explained how the love he shared with his wife is helping him now.
"A very profound and true relationship that she could feel held and relaxed in. That was what our daughter was born in to," he said. "One thing I find comfort in is I know that was the mindframe she was in when she was laying here."
He is not ready to talk about the criminal investigation or Rec and Park rules about driving on the grass. But friends said they are concerned that the man driving the truck, Tom Burnoski, violated the rules and didn't have a spotter as he drove on the grass and over Christy.
They are wondering how many other drivers break the rule and put park goers in danger. Burnoski is out on bail on unpaid leave while the investigation into the incident continues.
The district attorney said there is still work to do before deciding what charges to file.
In the meantime, city leaders have scheduled a hearing about the incident and the Rec and Park regulations on Oct 10, 2013 at San Francisco City Hall.