On the evening of January 31st an unidentified woman was critically injured when she was struck by a B52 bus at a notorious Bushwick intersection. The 23-year-old was crossing Myrtle Avenue shortly before 11 p.m. when she was hit by a bus turning east onto Myrtle from Palmetto Street. (This three-way intersection, where Myrtle, Wyckoff, and Palmetto cross, has a reputation for being dangerous and heavily trafficked by buses.) Today a friend of her family reached out to us with a heartbreaking update.
After clinging to life for several days, the woman, Ella Bandes, was taken off life support last Monday. Vince Lalomia, whose daughter was Bandes's roommate and her friend since High School, tells us Bandes had moved to Brooklyn from Montclair, NJ to attend graduate school. Her apartment was located a couple of blocks away from the intersection where she was killed.
"I don't understand how none of these bus drivers get any tickets," Lalomia tells us. "I work in the city and I have never seen or heard of a city bus driver get pulled over. That means they never speed, they never run a red light? I find it hard to believe." We're still trying to ascertain more details about how the accident occurred, but the NYPD says no criminality is suspected and no charges were filed against the bus driver.
Bandes was an organ donor and, according to NorthJersey.com, eight lives have been saved as a result of her organ donations. The website also reports:
She was a talented musician, dancer and artist. Throughout her childhood, she studied dance with Sharron Miller, art with Andrey Tamarchenko, piano with Joan Bujacich, and violin with Rebecca Harris. After graduating from Macalester College in 2011 with degrees in psychology and studio art, Ms. Bandes was completing an internship at the Columbia Psychiatric Institute.
She was working at the Weight Watchers corporate office, and was planning to pursue a doctorate in psychology. Her dream was to provide mental health services to underserved populations.
In lieu of flowers, Bandes's parents have set up a scholarship fund in her name at Macalester College.