Mother of Girls in Taconic Accident Files Suit

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Alyson, Emma, Katie Hance
Alyson, Emma, Katie Hance Photo Credit: Hance Family Foundation

MOUNT PLEASANT, N.Y. – The ugliness of Diane Schuler's wrong way Taconic State Parkway accident may be returning two years later, this time in the courtroom.

An array of cases have been recently filed, all aiming to place blame in the tragic accident that took the lives of eight. The lawsuits are more startling because they are between family members, close friends and, sometimes, fellow victims.

Jackie Hance, who lost her three daughters in the accident, filed suit against her brother-in-law, Daniel Schuler, according to The New York Post. 

The suit claims that the three Hance girls -- Emma, 8, Alyson, 7 and Katie, 5 -- suffered "terror, fear of impending death, extreme horror, fright, [and] mental anguish."

Earlier this week, Daniel Schuler, the husband of Diane Schuler, who was driving the wrong way while intoxicated and under the influence of marijuana, filed suits against the state of New York, claiming the roads were unsafe, and Warren Hance, who owned the car Schuler was driving. Hance, Diane’s brother and Daniel's brother-in-law, lost his three young daughters in the accident. Because Schuler was driving Hance's car at the time of the accident, Daniel claimed he is vicariously liable for the accident.

Jackie Hance recently co-wrote an article in Ladies Home Journal that expressed how she is dealing with the loss of her three daughters in the accident.

"While everything that mattered was already gone, everything that remained could still be taken," Hance said in the article, referring to the lawsuit filed against her husband Warren last year by the family of Guy Bastardi, who was driving the correct way on the parkway when Diane Schuler crashed into his car.

Thomas Ruskin, a private investigator hired by Daniel Schuler to examine the accident, expressed his displeasure with Schuler's lawsuit.

"It definitely doesn't integrate yourself with people that may actually feel for you," Ruskin said.

The car that Guy Bastardi was driving also carried his father, Michael Bastardi, and a family friend, Daniel Longo. Now Longo's brother filed a lawsuit claiming that Guy Bastardi bore partial responsibility for the death of Daniel as Guy was the driver of the vehicle.

Calls placed to Kevin Grennan, the attorney for Daniel Schuler, and Kenneth Pyror, the attorney for Warren Hance, were unreturned Wednesday.

What do you think of the lawsuits? Tell us below or on Facebook.

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Comments (2)

I just seen the HBO documentary and it is very sad. Im very sorry for their loss but Jackie Hance and Daniel Schuler are in denial that Diane was intoxicated by alcohol and marijuana. Diane may not be a drunk and only a social drinker once a month. But on that day and time she was intoxicated. No one will ever findout why was she in that state and why did she consume alcohol and marijuana while driving. Daniel had all the tests redone and the tests came back with the same answer. Now he wants to exhume the body to have more tests done but got denied. How many tests do you need to do before you realize that she drove DWI.
Now Daniel is trying to cast the blame on the state for wrong way signs not being posted. I think all the people who were witnesses in Diane almost crashing into them sue Daniel because of fear of impending death and horror, and also any money gained by documentaries and books.
One thing I didnt get from the documentary is why Daniel wasnt working after the deadly accident. He was working with Nassau County Police dept as a civilian, not as a police officer. Jackie Vance vents in the doc that she is doing all the errands plus working 14 hrs a day while Daniel does nothing all day.
Again I am very sorry for everyones loss in the accident. The witnesses that were onscene are tramatized. I dont know how it feels to lose someone in an accident that is out of the norm for the person at fault. Daniel and Jackie must come to terms what was the reason.

I plan on filing suit against all of these people for filling up the courts dockets with frivilous crap. This is the reason people purchase car and life insurance. I am not making light of the losses these people suffered...those losses are horrific; but filing civil lawsuits to get to the truth is a sad joke.