WATERBURY, Conn. (WTNH) -- An elderly woman was killed in an early Saturday morning hit and run accident, police said.
Even at 90, Nella Atkins stayed active in the garden, the kitchen, and as the matriarch.
Her family and the community is just in disbelief that someone could hit a 90-year-old woman and leave her in the street.
"That's how my family grew up knowing her and she passed those traits onto us and we're all strong individuals because of her," said Michael Pieksza, her nephew.
All of that taken away early Saturday morning. Pieksza says she suffered from dementia. She has around-the-clock caregivers but, they thought she was asleep when she wandered out around 1:30 a.m., crossed the road, and was struck by a car. The driver left her for dead.
"They left the scene. She was still alive even when they hit her and she actually died when they found her in the middle of the street, she died shortly after that on the ambulance," said Pieksza. "So, there's anger, there's shock and there's grief. We're all dealing with it in different ways."
He believes his great-aunt Nella was walking nearly a mile to go to her second home, her local church.
"She was raised a strong Lithuanian Catholic, as we all were and it was a major point of her life to be involved in church," explained Pieksza.
Now, with the strength he learned from his great-aunt, he pleads with her killer to face what he did.
"Please, find it in your heart to come forward and allow our family to put some closure on all of this, we're going to bury her Tuesday morning and we're going to give her the burial she deserves, but she didn't deserve to go this way," said Pieksza.
Anyone with information on the incident is asked to call Crimestoppers at (203) 755-1234. Cash rewards will be given for any tips that lead to an arrest of the driver of the vehicle.
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