Uncasville mother pushing for safer highway following her son’s death

WATERFORD -- A mother whose son died in a crash is trying to save other people’s lives.

An Uncasville mother lost her 23-year-old son Stephen Wilmot in a car accident on I-395,  February 22.

Now, she's trying to make that stretch of the highway safer so no other mother has to feel the same pain.

"Everyday is tough, but I gotta keep thinking of the happy thoughts, not of the tragedy," Virginia Wilmot said.

Stephen died two days before his birthday.

The accident occurred around 2 a.m., at the southbound lanes near exit 2 in Waterford.

Troopers said the car driven by Stephen, went off the road and struck a rock face. Authorities said the car then went back across the road and collided with a metal guard rail before stopping in the median.

Police said Stephen was brought to a hospital and died from his injuries.

According to the police report, Stephen wasn't wearing a seat belt and speeding could have been a factor after he hit a guard rail in the middle of the road.

Stephen was about two miles from his home.

Nevertheless, his mother believes if there was a guard rail on the rock face side of the highway, that could have saved her son's life. Virginia is now urging the state to add a rail to that section of highway.

FOX61 reached out to Connecticut DOT spokesperson Kevin Nursick who said the criteria isn't met for a guide rail to be warranted. There's no sharp curve or cliff, and they haven't noticed a pattern of serious crashes there.

"I think one death is enough accidents to warrant putting up something," said Virginia.

Connecticut DOT also said they’re called guide rails not guard rails because those metal rails don't guard you from harm, they can actually injure or kill you, but they can guide cars down the road.

"For a mother the worst thing you can go through is the loss of a child," Virginia said.