Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Some flowers. Remember Ray Ann Gloyna.

Lupines in Abilene.

A popular Texas teacher
Place: Abilene, Texas
Date: April 9, 2007
Deceased: Ray Ann Gloyna, 58
Vehicle: 2001 Toyota Avalon (not recalled)
Details: It's been almost three years since his wife died in a car accident, and Dennis Gloyna says he's still a bit of a mess. He's planning to put his house up for sale and is holding an estate sale to get rid of some of the things they acquired through the years.
"I can't be in the house, and I can't have those things around me," he says. "I marvel at people I've talked to who have had tragedies and at how well they've made it. I'm just not one of those people."
Ray Ann Gloyna was on her way to Mexia, Texas, to visit her sick mother at the time of the crash. She'd driven the 250 miles east to Mexia countless times before, having lived in Abilene for almost 20 years. She'd been through the intersection where she died countless times, her husband says.
Inexplicably, Ray Ann Gloyna ran through the intersection's stop sign and into the side of an 18-wheeler.
There were no skid marks indicating that she'd tried to slow down, just divots in the pavement from the force of the crash. She died instantly.
Ray Ann was a popular teacher in the Abilene school district, teaching a transitional first-grade program for students who needed some extra attention before moving up to full-time first grade. Her husband says her funeral was standing-room only. The school district brought in counselors to help students deal with their grief.
Dennis says he filed a complaint with NHTSA about three months ago, after hearing the reports about Toyota's sudden-acceleration cases. He hasn't heard back from the safety agency.
"I wrote that thinking this is like going to a dead-letter office," he said. "I might as well write Santa Claus."
While he's waiting for a response and for some sort of investigation, he at least now feels like he has an answer to the mystery of his wife's death.
"The only way this could have happened is if she could not have stopped the car," he says.