Palm Coast, Florida
Wednesday, February 7, 2008

By Derek L. Kinner, Staff Writer

PALM  COAST - Theresa Paglierani's life revolved around her family and her church, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church, friends say.

She had stopped at the church to pray Monday when she was struck by a hit-and-run driver in the parking lot about 2 p.m., Florida Highway Patrol troopers said. She died later at Halifax Medical Center in Daytona Beach.

The 72-year-old woman lived with her daughter, son-in-law and two grandchildren in Palm Coast, a family friend, Kathleen West, said at the scene Monday. The church was a large part of their lives, West said.
The last thing Paglierani did was visit the church, she said.

West said "she was in adoration," a Catholic religious act acknowledging God's supreme perfection and dominion .......... "You sit there with Jesus." 

Afterward, Paglierani left through the church's front doors and walked to the parking lot. When she stepped off the curb, a vehicle struck her, FHP Cpl. Robert Asbill said.

"It appears it (the vehicle) was coming north in the parking lot, drove over her, and then contin­ued to go out the parking lot," Asbill said.

A woman in the parking lot of the church's school next door was walking toward the school, away from the church, when the accident occurred, he said.

"She heard a noise, looked around and thought she saw a car," Asbill said.

Though the woman got only a glimpse, she told troopers the vehicle appeared to be a tan sedan, perhaps a Buick, he said.

Another woman who left the church moments after Paglierani found her lying in the parking lot and called police.

That woman did not see any vehicles, Asbill said. The parking lot was vacant around the time of' the accident, he said.

Paglierani was flown by helicopter to Halifax Medical Center in Daytona Beach, where she was pronounced dead, Asbill said.

West said Paglierani's granddaughter called her with the news and West immediately went to the scene because family members were too upset. She helped officers fill out paper­work and retrieved Paglierani's belongings for the family.

"This was one of her favorite places," West said as investigators worked the scene. "To be a hit and run, and have your life taken like that ... I am devastated. I am beyond words."

Paglierani's grandson, Nicholas Comeau, attends the church school, and her daughter, Donna Comeau, is a member of the church's Parent Teacher Organization, West said.

West's daughter; Patricia, and Paglierani's granddaughter, Leah, attend church groups together. All of Paglierani's family regularly attended church at St. Elizabeth's, West said.

She said Paglierani and her daughter were especially close.

"She just loved her family very, very, very much," West said. "They were everything to her."

Paglierani and her daughter were planning a trip to Boston this weekend, West said.

After the crime scene tape was cleared and investigators left, all that remained was Paglierani's small car.

On the bumper was an old Boston Red Sox sticker. A decal on the side of the car said, "Keep Christ in Christmas."

Palm Coast, Florida
Wednesday, February 21, 2006

By Jim Haugh, Staff Writer

PALM COAST - A priest believes a driver cutting through the parking lot at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church is the likely culprit in a hit-and­run that killed a parishioner.

The Florida Highway Patrol is still looking for the driver of the vehicle that struck Theresa Paglierani, 72. She had just finished praying at the church and had stepped off the curb and into the parking lot when she was struck about 2 p.m., Monday, Feb. 5. Paglierani died later that day at Halifax Medical Center in Daytona Beach.

The church is on the corner of Belie Terre Parkway and Cypress Point Parkway.

"A lot of people will cut through the parking lot at a high rate of speed," said the Rev. Mark Hatter.

Since the incident, the church has contacted an engineer to raise the heights of its speed bumps and to build more speed bumps across its parking lot.

Hatter would like it so traffic cannot travel faster than 5 miles per hour through the parking lot.

A witness described the car that hit the Palm Coast woman as a tan sedan, Florida Highway Patrol Lt. Bill Leeper said.

"We're hoping someone who saw something will give us more information," Leeper said. "Without more witnesses or evidence, it's going to be difficult (to solve the case)."

Since Paglierani's death, people have placed flowers on a church bench close to where the accident occurred.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the FHP at (904) 301-3663.