NY rep mourns limo crash victims: ‘So much pain in a very small spot of the world’

NY rep mourns limo crash victims: ‘So much pain in a very small spot of the world’
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Rep. Paul TonkoPaul David TonkoThe Year Ahead: Dems under pressure to deliver on green agenda Progressives say dire climate reports point to need for ‘Green New Deal’ Hillicon Valley: Justices weigh iPhone app case | Farewell to Facebook's war room? | UK Parliament turns up heat on Zuckerberg | Russian hackers return after midterms | Papadopoulos begins 2-week prison sentence | NASA lands probe on Mars MORE (D-N.Y.) late Monday mourned the victims of a deadly New York state limousine crash during a vigil attended by thousands. 

"So much pain in a very small spot of the world," Tonko told the crowd, local TV station WRGB reported.

"When we had a vision of a pedestrian bridge, I thought it would be a great stage by which to grow community," he said. "Never in that imagining that I expect that we would gather for a moment like this."


Twenty people died on Saturday after a limousine crashed into another vehicle and pedestrians near Albany, N.Y., according to local authorities. The incident was the deadliest transportation-related accident in the U.S. since 2009, the National Transportation Safety Board determined on Sunday. 

"We are crushed with you, we are crushed for you," Tonko said as mourning families and residents cried at the vigil, according to The Associated Press

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said Monday that the driver of the limousine did not have the proper license to operate the vehicle, and the limo itself failed inspection last month with the state Department of Transportation. 

New York state has moved to shut down and investigate Prestige Limousine, the company that owns the limo, according to the AP. 

"In my opinion, the owner of this company had no business putting a failed vehicle on the road," Cuomo said at an event over the weekend. "Prestige has a lot of questions to answer."

Tammy Smith, a local resident at the vigil, told WRGB that she knew four of the people killed in the accident.

"I think I screamed but I don't know if it even came out of my mouth," she said, remembering her reaction when she heard about the crash.

"My heart is sunken," Karina Halse, whose sister Amanda Halse died in the crash, said, according to the AP. "It's in a place where I've never felt this type of pain before."