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Third member of Meriden family dies from Waterford crash

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WATERFORD – A third person has died as a result of injuries suffered in a crash Sunday in Waterford.

Officials at Yale-New Haven hospital said Darin Robinson, 26,  died Wednesday morning. He was the front seat passenger in the car that was hit by a truck from behind in a multi-vehicle crash on I-95.

Tuesday, the second child in the vehicle died from her injuries in the crash.

Sanaa Reynolds, 9,  died on her birthday. Dacari Robinson, 3, was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash.

Authorities say a tractor-trailer slammed into their car and two other vehicles while traffic was slowed in the area due to previous crashes.

The children’s mother, Baughnita Leary, 25, was driving the car.

meriden family

On Wednesday, many in the Meriden Community were mourning the loss of the family.

“When you go into the student’s classroom and you see the cubbie and the picture of that student and knowing that student’s not coming back. It’s very difficult,” said Mark Benigini, superintendent of Meriden Public Schools.

Sanaa Reynolds was a 4th grader at Roger Sherman Elementary School in Meriden.

“She had a beautiful smile that lit up her classroom everyday. She had lots of friends, just one of our shining stars at Sherman,” said Lysette Torres, principal of Sherman Elementary School.

Dacari Robinson attended preschool at Sherman Elementary.

Grief councilors, psychologists and social workers were sent to talk to the students and parents dealing with the tragedy.

“The family is well-known in the community, a strong group of friends. I think the support is overwhelming,” said Benigini.

There is also a Go-Fund Me page for the family that has already raised more than $10,000 in donations by more than 200 people.

Donations included $500 from the Meriden Humane society.

The humane society’s staff members say Sannaa and Dacari and their mother frequently volunteered and spent time at the shelter.

“They would walk the dogs, the mom would walk the small dogs.  The kids would have a blast coming around here, because it’s something they can’t have at home, but they came here to have fun,” said Rachel Sullivan, assistant director for the Meriden Humane Society.

The humane society is planning to raise money for funeral costs for the family.

Authorities continue to investigate the cause of the crash.

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  • Bonnie Michaud

    Darin and family, I am so saddened to hear about this horrible tragedy. They are home now with god resting in peace. Darin jr. and these two little angels are fine. They are looking down on you saying don’t worry about us, we are ok. God is taking care of them. Love all of you. I am here if anyone needs anything.

  • Charlene Chavious

    My heart aches for this family. I learned of this story through the best friend of “Dee”. His childhood friend Antoine, lives here in Virginia beach but is from Waterford. The thought of Baughnita having to leave the hospital to go home to an empty house where there was once a family unit, is painful. The problem stemmed from a rubbernecker on the highway. Maybe we are all guilty of this at some point and time. However, it is no excuse. His actions took the lives of 3 innocent people. No matter how sorry he is, they can’t come back. My prayers and condolences goes out to her and everyone involved.

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