A Long Island woman was killed in a hit-and-run crash in Lindenhurst in the early hours of Monday morning -- three months after her sister-in-law died in a crash there and less than two years after her brother met the exact same fate.
Pauline Aluska, 54, was found lying in the road at Montauk Highway and South 13th Street around 12:30 Monday morning. She was taken to a hospital, where she was pronounced dead. An investigation determined that she was hit by a car that then fled the scene, Suffolk County Police said.
The police later confirmed that Pauline Aluska was related to Diane Aluska, who died in a highly publicized crash in Lindenhurst on May 14. Diane Aluska was killed on Mother's Day when a car jumped a curb outside of a bakery; she pushed her teenage daughter out of the way and was crushed by the vehicle.
Pauline Aluska was also the brother of John Aluska, who was killed in a Lindenhurst hit-and-run on Sept. 28, 2015. Police said both John and Pauline's deaths were under investigation and no arrests had been made.
Neighbors found it hard to fathom that one family could lose so much so close to home.
"My heart aches, all our hearts ache for the family," said Kathleen Galiani, who was so shaken she headed to church Monday to pray for the Lindenhurst family.
"Horrific. Three in one family. It's terrible," she said.
Domenic Roseto, who lives along Montauk Highway where Pauline and John Aluska were killed, says drivers exceeding the 40 mph speed limit have claimed a half-dozen lives there -- and he believes the state has taken too long to install traffic lights to slow everyone down.
The mayor of Lindenhurst says the state is in the process of installing two traffic lights along Montauk Highway -- but residents maintain the work is progressing too slowly.
"A lot of people have been hurt or maimed here," said Roseto. "Maybe this woman could have been saved if the light was here."
In a statement Monday, the state's Department of Transportation said the project is on track to be completed this fall.
"We extend our deepest sympathy to the family and all affected by this tragic accident," the statement said. "NYSDOT works closely with communities to reduce pedestrian risk at crossings across the state. A traffic study on this particular location supported a new traffic signal which is being installed at NY27A and South 13th Street."