Whitestone teen struck by car laid to rest

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Angela D’Ambrose, who died last week after being struck by a car while crossing Francis Lewis Boulevard in Whitestone, was a hardworking and beautiful teenager who loved nothing more than to spend time with the friends and family that were her rock, mourners attending the 15-year-old’s funeral Tuesday said.

“She was an amazing girl,” said D’Ambrose’s cousin, Larry Cappello, who gave the eulogy at the service held at the Scarpaci Funeral Home in Brooklyn. “She knew how to make all of us smile.”

D’Ambrose, a Whitestone resident who attended Bayside High School, dedicated herself to her studies, spending hours on everything from math homework to a project on the solar system, Cappello said.

She “touched so many people in so many ways,” including her grandmother, Susan Mahoney, with whom she would watch the movie “8 Mile” “a hundred times”, Cappello said.

D’Ambrose died last Thursday night in an accident that sent another teenager, 18-year-old Terrance Semler, a Queens Academy High School student, to New York Hospital Queens in Flushing, police said. Semler remained in serious condition at the hospital, a spokeswoman said.

Officers responded to a 911 call at 17th Road and Francis Lewis Boulevard around 7:40 p.m.last Thursday and found the two teens had been struck by a white Isuzu Rodeo driving northbound on Francis Lewis, police said.

The unconscious victims were brought to NYHQ, where D’Ambrose was pronounced dead from her injuries, police said.

The vehicle, driven by a 65-year-old man whose identity was not released, struck the teens as they were crossing Francis Lewis Boulevard at the intersection of 17th Road, police said.

The Rev. Guy Sbordone of St. Frances Cabrini church in Brooklyn said at the funeral that “you named your Angela for the angels, and now we pray for the angels to come and take her to a great place of peace, harmony and joy.”

Dozens of flower arrangements lined the walls in the funeral home for the service, and photo collages of a smiling D’Ambrose were prominently displayed in the funeral home’s lobby and near her open casket.

D’Ambrose was a “darling girl” who had befriended many of her neighbors in the short time she lived with her grandfather, Jim Mahoney, 64, in Whitestone, according to Mary Napolitano, who lived next door to D’Ambrose.

“My granddaughter Valentina just loved Angela,” Napolitano said Friday afternoon. “She was really beside herself when she heard. Angela was really wonderful.”

D’Ambrose moved to Whitestone to live with her grandfather a couple of months ago after living with her mother in Manhattan, D’Ambrose’s great-uncle Bill Mahoney said. The teenager had “practically lived” at her grandfather’s Whitestone home while her grandmother, Susan Mahoney, was still alive. After her grandmother died about two years ago, Mahoney said D’Ambrose wanted to move in with her grandfather.

“My brother had given up his room for her, and they had just redone it,” Mahoney said.

D’Ambrose was a “very quiet” girl who loved to dance, Mahoney said. “She had her whole life in front of her.”

Police said no criminality was suspected as of Tuesday and the investigation was ongoing.

Ian MacFarland contributed to this story.

Reach reporter Anna Gustafson by e-mail at or by phone at 718-229-0300 ext. 174.

Updated 6:29 pm, October 10, 2011
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