Man holds vigil for his daughter

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A Jamaica man who killed one daughter and injured another last week while backing into his driveway in the family car was spending nearly every waking moment with his surviving 7-year-old daughter at Mary Immaculate Hospital, a neighbor said.

Police have not filed any charges against Burton Williams, 50, who did not see his two daughters as he drove his car June 25 into the backyard he used as a driveway at 102-31 183rd Place at 4 p.m., said police spokeswoman Carmen Melendez.

Funeral services were held on June 28 for Lorraine Williams, 3, who was pronounced dead on arrival at Mary Immaculate Hospital three days earlier, said Daphne Lawrence, a hospital spokeswoman.

Williams' 7-year-old daughter, Cheryl, who suffered a broken hip and leg, remained at Mary Immaculate Hospital where she was receiving treatment for the fractures, Lawrence said.

Una Ganatt, who lives next door to Williams, said he had returned home for brief intervals since last week's accident, but spent much of the time visiting his daughter at Mary Immaculate, where he works in Environmental Services.

Many of his co-workers from the hospital attended the funeral mass at the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Roman Catholic Church on Parsons Boulevard in downtown Jamaica, said Lawrence.

"It was a lovely mass -the whole neighborhood went," said Ganatt.

Ganatt said another neighbor, David Barette, spoke during the funeral and said the neighborhood wholly supported Williams and would do whatever it could to help the West Indian immigrant get on with his life.

Ganatt decided not to attend the burial at the All Saints Cemetery in Great Neck and went home to cook some chicken soup for the Williams family.

"I thought she could use it - she hasn't eaten much," said Ganatt, referring to Loran's mother Ilene, an immigrant from the Philippines.

"When I lost my daughter, I remember someone brought me chicken soup," said Ganatt, whose 14-year-old daughter was killed many years ago in an accident at summer camp.

"I know just what they are going through," Ganatt said.

Williams lives in a row of brick homes that are connected except for several small alleyways which lead to the rear of the homes. He sometimes parked his car in his small back yard, which he reached via a narrow dirt road that connects Hunter Avenue and 104th Avenue and runs parallel to 183rd Place.

Updated 7:04 pm, October 10, 2011
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