Victims speak at hearing for man guilty in Ont. crash that killed elderly women

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CHATHAM, Ont. - Some of the family members of four elderly women killed in a head-on car collision say they doubt they'll ever get over the loss of their loved ones.
The families delivered emotional victim impact statements at a sentencing hearing today in Chatham, in southwestern Ontario.
Their cherished mothers and grandmothers were described as the "matriarchs" of their families.
The women, all in their 80s and known as the pie ladies, were headed home from a church supper when the crash happened in November 2007.
A minivan driven by Wladyslaw Bilski crossed the centre line and smashed into the Ford Focus carrying the Chatham women.
Bilski, 49, was convicted in June of nine charges, including four counts of impaired driving causing death, after court heard he had more than three times the legal limit of alcohol in his blood.
The impaired driving causing death charge carries a maximum sentence of 14 years in prison.
Marion Dawson, Jean Ripley, Verna Neaves and Bernice Phillips were killed in the crash.
Dawson's daughter, Carol Williston, told court she has not been able to get over the loss of her mother.
"I bet there isn't a day that goes by that I (don't) think 'I must ask Mum, she'll know,"' Williston said.
Bob Ripley, the son of Jean Ripley, remembered his mother as someone who loved arts and crafts, created wacky puppets, and made ceramics.
"What was taken from us is the chance to say goodbye," he said.
On Monday, the judge stayed four counts of dangerous driving causing death and one count of driving with more than the legal limit of alcohol.
The agreement between the Crown and defence means Bilski will be sentenced on four counts of impaired driving causing death.
The case was adjourned to Aug. 31.

Organizations: Ford Focus

Geographic location: CHATHAM, Southwestern Ontario

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