2 fatal accidents hours and a mile apart in Shelby Township - New York News

2 fatal accidents hours and a mile apart in Shelby Township

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The Buick Park Avenue police say crashed into a minivan at 23 Mile and Hayes.  (Credit: WJBK | myFOXDetroit.com) The Buick Park Avenue police say crashed into a minivan at 23 Mile and Hayes. (Credit: WJBK | myFOXDetroit.com)
Tomislav Anakiev Tomislav Anakiev
SHELBY TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WJBK) -

Sitting still in the Shelby Township police lot is a minivan in which a husband, wife and their three kids were taking an evening ride.  Police say a Buick Park Avenue slammed into that minivan killing a three-year-old and that the driver was drunk when she ran a light at 23 Mile and Hayes at 8:45 p.m.

"Preliminary results show that there's alcohol involved.  We have plenty of witnesses that saw the person run the red light, and we're pretty comfortable that we have a drunk driving case here and a tragic accident," said Police Chief Roland Woelkers.

The woman who police say was driving the Buick was pronounced dead at the hospital.  Broken bones and other injuries also sent the child's family members to the hospital.

The police chief, a father himself, said this accident hits home hard.

"It's real frustrating to me as a police chief in our community that we continue to have drunk driving appear in these tragic events, and it still seems that we still have people out there drinking and driving.  It just boggles the mind that we have that going on."

Then about two-and-a-half hours later at Hayes and 24 Mile Road, a 72-year-old man was struck and killed on impact.  The victim, Tomislav Anakiev, moved to America from Macedonia and became a citizen a little over ten years ago.  His son said the highly successful businessman helped orphans a world away and neighbors here at home.  Recently he suffered from dementia and depression.

"He retired about ten years ago.  He's been married with my mom about 48 years," his son said.

His neighbor is sadden and still shocked.

"Always out taking care of the lawn, doing everything he does to take care of the neighborhood.  It's a true tragedy, absolute tragedy."

The 62-year-old driver that hit him was interviewed at the scene and sent home.  No charges.

"He was helping everybody he could help," said his son.  "Anybody ask him for a favor, he would try to help them if he could."

As for Anakiev, his son told us he will be buried next to his eldest son, who died just four years ago.

In the meantime, we're told the mother injured in the accident at 23 Mile and Hayes is in stable condition.

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