Best Man-To-Be Killed In Hudson River Boat Crash Laid To Rest Friday
PEARL RIVER, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – Friends and family bid a final farewell to the second victim killed in a boating crash on the Hudson River last month.
A Funeral Mass was held Friday morning St. John the Baptist Church in Piermont for Mark Lennon, 30.
Lennon was killed when the powerboat he was in crashed into a barge near the Tappan Zee Bridge on July 26.
Lennon was to be the best man at the wedding of two close friends, Lindsey Stewart and Brian Bond. The bride-to-be, Stewart, was also killed in the crash.
Lennon’s brother, Raymond, said his brother loved Bond and Stewart and “looked forward to being part of their wedding.”
Stewart and Lennon were thrown off the boat. When their bodies were found, they did not have life vests on, said Sheriff’s Department Chief William Barbera.
The deadly collision left Bond, 35, grieving for his intended bride and his best friend while facing surgery for his own injuries.
“He lost his two best friends — his wife to be and his best friend,” said Eleanor Manheimer, a former co-worker of Stewart’s.
The county Medical Examiner’s Office said Stewart died of head injuries and drowning. Lennon drowned, according to the office.
The pilot of the boat, Jojo John, was charged with vehicular manslaughter and police said they suspect he was intoxicated.
But Stewart’s and Lennon’s parents suggested that poor lighting on the barge and not drunkenness was responsible for the crash.
In a statement issued Wednesday, they said their conversations with survivors of the crash, including Bond, made clear that the passengers “had consumed very little alcohol and considered themselves sober.”
“None of them saw the barge. They did not brace for impact and could not identify what they had hit — even after impact — as they desperately worked to direct the first responders coming to their aid,” said Stewart’s mother, stepfather Walter Kosik and Lennon’s parents, Kevin and Dympna Lennon.
They asked other boaters to help with the investigation by emailing any knowledge they have “of the barges or the accident conditions” to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Investigators have said they are looking into whether the barge was properly lighted. The stationary barge was carrying construction materials for the $3.9 billion project to build the new Tappan Zee Bridge.
The U.S. Coast Guard has insisted the construction company working on the new Tappan Zee Bridge played “no negligent role” in the crash. The Thruway Authority added lighting after the crash.
“The fact that the next day they put more lights on that barge, to me, is a sign there wasn’t adequate lighting on that barge” said Nicholas Warywoda, an attorney for Bond.
Stewart was remembered at her funeral on Thursday which was held in the same church where she was to say her vows on Aug. 10.
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