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Jun 15, 2013 7:44 PMPublication: The East Hampton Press

UPDATE: East Hampton Village Police Identify Driver In Crash That Killed Springs Girl

Jun 19, 2013 7:41 AM
UPDATE: Monday, 2:08 p.m.

East Hampton Village Police identified Maria Brennan, 73, of East Hampton, as the driver of the vehicle in the crash that claimed 14-year-old Anna’s life.

In a press release on Monday, Village Police said the accident occurred on Route 27 as both the car, a 2002 Ford Explorer, and Anna Lytton who was on a bike, were traveling westbound. The car struck the bike as Anna attempted to turn left toward the CVS pharmacy across the street, according to the press release.

Ms. Brennan was cited with a vehicle and traffic violation for failure to exercise due care, police said in the statement.

Meanwhile, officials from the Springs and East Hampton school districts issued statements on the accident. A “crisis team” was assembled on Monday morning at Springs School, with counselors from the school and other neighboring schools on hand to assists students, staff and family.

“Anna was a student who always brought a smile to everyone’s face,” Springs School Principal Eric Casale said in a statement posted on the school’s website. “She was a gentle soul who cared so much for others. Whether you were her friend, her classmate or an adult, Anna always greeted you with a smile and a friendly and genuine ‘hello.’ Her smile was infectious to the point that when you saw Anna smile, you could not help but join her. That was the type of person Anna was and will always be remembered as.”

UPDATE: 12:20 p.m.

Anna Mirabai Lytton, 14, of Springs, was killed in the accident, her grandmother and a friend of the family confirmed on Sunday afternoon.

It was Anna’s first day of her summer job—working at Mandala Yoga in Amagansett, where her mother, Kate Rabinowitz, works, said Carolyne Abrams Dyer, a friend of the family, and Andrea Rabinowitz, Anna’s grandmother.

Anna lived in Springs with her mother, her 16-year-old brother, James Lytton, and her father, Rameshwar Das. She was on her bicycle crossing Montauk Highway when she was struck by a 73-year-old female driver. Anna was alive before being airlifted to Stony Brook University Hospital, Ms. Dyer said. She later was pronounced dead at the hospital.

The young girl was slated to attend the Ross School in fall.

“She was incredibly bright, mature, compassionate, loving beyond her years,” Ms. Dyer said over the phone, her voice breaking. “She was raised in a world of tremendous openness and love, and she was given every opportunity. Her mother actually just told a story of how if she wanted to know something, she would research it, because she was so interested in knowing about everything—she would go up and research and want to know. She had an insatiable love of knowledge.”

Anna was “the most loving, wonderful granddaughter,” said Ms. Rabinowitz. She was also a “lovely writer.”

“She was interested in people,” Ms. Rabinowitz said. “She was very much a people-person and a peacemaker. And she was just kind of interested in everything.”

She said Anna and her brother James were “the most devoted brother and sister you ever saw.”

Mr. Das, her father, was in Hawaii for work when the accident happened, said Ms. Rabinowitz, who is married to Alan Rabinowitz.

A witness who works in the vicinity of the accident, and who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that when he got to the scene, he saw the bike underneath the van. He also saw the elderly driver being consoled by a group of people. “It looked like she was shaken,” he said.

Village Police have not yet identified the driver, or formally named the victim.


A 14-year-old girl on a bike was struck by a car in East Hampton Village on Saturday afternoon and later pronounced dead after being airlifted to Stony Brook University Hospital.

The girl was “pinned under the vehicle and freed by six to eight Good Samaritans” after a 73-year-old driver hit her, according to a press release issued by East Hampton Village Police. The girl was rushed to the East Hampton Airport by East Hampton Village Ambulance and then flown to Stony Brook, where she was declared dead.

The driver of the vehicle was not injured, according to the police press release. The accident happened at the intersection of Pantigo Road and Gay Road Highway along Montauk Highway at about 1:25 p.m.

Police have not yet identified the young victim.

The investigation is ongoing, Village Police said in the release. Witnesses are encouraged to contact the East Hampton Village Police at (631) 324-0777.

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How did that woman not see a child on a bike? Very sad.
By joan s (53), hampton bays on Jun 15, 13 7:46 PM
I think because these SUV's are so tall the average driver can't see over the hood. This is an unaddressed safety issue.
By lursagirl (241), southampton on Jun 17, 13 2:30 PM
1 member liked this comment
Oh dear. How sad. Terrible start for the summer. Prayers for the child's family.
By mt (7), East Hampton on Jun 15, 13 9:15 PM
A very sad way to begin the summer season. Drivers need to pay attention to what is going around them. Too many people are Pre-occupied! Thoughts and prayers going out to the family of the victim.
By beachbag50 (18), East Hampton on Jun 15, 13 9:37 PM
1 member liked this comment
This is not the "country" anymore .... Riding a bike in most towns was possible say in 1973.... Also .... The DMV really needs to crack down on elderly drivers .... And before all the elderly drivers get upset at this comment , yes talking on cell phones and teenage drivers are hazardous as well... This is so sad... Prayers to this young girls family
By Biba (564), East Hampton on Jun 15, 13 11:05 PM
4 members liked this comment
73 is not elderly. 83, yes, but not 73. As we don't know what happened, we don't know who was at fault. Maybe the woman was distracted, maybe the teen darted across. Either way it was an a terrible tragedy.
By goldenrod (505), southampton on Jun 16, 13 8:23 PM
This is absolutely horrible and should not happen. And to anyone who says one should not ride bicycles on the roads, shame on you. Bicycles have a right to be on the roads and the roads should be designed to accomodate them as well as pedestrians, especially in a tourist area.

My sincere condolences go out to this family.
By Barley Dunne (21), Southampton on Jun 16, 13 7:52 AM
My deepest sympathies to this family. The loss of a child is the deepest, saddest loss that exists. I do not know any of the details of the accident, but I cannot help but also feel badly for the older woman who hit this child. Her life has horribly changed forever.
By Mrs.Sea (268), Sag Harbor on Jun 16, 13 1:21 PM
I am sure that the van's driver is as horrified as the little girl's family. Horrible at any age - tragic at such a young age. Peace be with her and her family.
By Dodger (161), Southampton Village on Jun 16, 13 1:50 PM
1 member liked this comment
I saw it all. I will never be the same because I was shocked as it happened. It was a freak accident.

Sad to say, no matter who is at fault, if you feel someone needs to be at fault, in the end, this little girl is no longer with us.

I along with a few others tried to help the situation.

My deepest sympathies to this family. I can only imagine how they feel
By GaryAndriotis (3), Queens, New York on Jun 16, 13 6:44 PM
Not a freak accident, the explorer was not following the rules of the road. If everyone followed the rules of the road there hardly beamy traffic deaths! It attempted to cross the double yellow line which in some cases the only thing on our roads that stop head on collisions.
All very sad.
By skipp (1), amagansett on Jun 17, 13 7:16 PM
I was the "big guy" you saw who helped lift the car and try to save her if you were there. I was the one yelling at everyone to do something instead of just staring and doing nothing while the girl was pinned between the bike and car. I saw everything including the accident since I was the second yielded car going east. The explorer was in the left lane going into the turning lane and preparing to turn left into the parking lot. Others told the police the same report which is why they use me ...more
By GaryAndriotis (3), Queens, New York on Jun 19, 13 12:39 PM
1 member liked this comment
sad beyond words. truly tragic.
By user.name (46), the jungle on Jun 16, 13 7:39 PM
Tragic. Prayers to the family. Sad to hear when such young life is taken before they grew and experience all life had to offer. Rip.
By SHTownHB (75), Hampton Bays on Jun 16, 13 11:08 PM
By LI native (127), east moriches on Jun 17, 13 12:32 AM
I have the honor of knowing this beautiful young lady's father, who is an amazing man, and I cannot begin to imagine the profound loss that he, his wife and son are experiencing. You are not supposed to bury your children. My deepest of sympathies are extended to Ramesh, Kate and James. May you begin to find peace in your loving memories of Anna. Know that you have the community's thoughts and prayers.
By nsea93 (39), Southampton on Jun 17, 13 12:37 AM
2 members liked this comment
Such a horrible tragedy. So incredibly sad. It is not necessarily related to his incident, but always make your child wear a helmet, no matter their age, no matter how much they protest.

By progressnow (556), sag harbor on Jun 17, 13 10:40 AM
I read this sad tearful story out of respect for the young girl. said a prayer for her, for her family and for the driver. my deepest sympathies to the parents & family. she will be in thoughts & prayers.
By david h (405), southampton on Jun 17, 13 11:19 AM
Words cannot express the sadness we share with this family for the loss of their daughter and sister Anna. You are in my prayers as well and know that we share your anguish.
By V.Tomanoku (788), southampton on Jun 17, 13 4:13 PM
OMG a 14 year old girl on a bicycle was struck by that car and then dragged for 20 feet. 20 feet is a pretty long distance after impact. How is it possible that the driver did not immediately stop at the moment she was aware that she had collided with someone or something? For that girl to be dragged 20 feet and to be pinned so tightly underneath the car that 6 or more people had to lift the car off of her - it is outrageous that either the driver was travelling so fast within the village that ...more
By Vikki K (490), Southampton on Jun 17, 13 4:30 PM
Please keep in mind the tragic loss of life, the despair of the parents and sibling and the despair of the woman driving the SUV. Many lives have been affected by this loss and the blame game is not helpful to the family or others feeling the great loss of such a beautiful spirit. Please do not let this be the forum for changing or enacting law but instead show respect and sorrow for all that has been lost. Peace.
By Sage (4), Riverhead on Jun 17, 13 4:52 PM
She was dragged because the driver was in shock with the initial hit. If you were facing the driver from the east bound lane, you could see the driver of the Ford froze. That was the worse reaction, but a human reaction. Not everyone is perfect. I do no know the driver, but I think she should def stop driving if she cannot control a car better.
By GaryAndriotis (3), Queens, New York on Jun 19, 13 12:41 PM
And I really do think your comments and all of the comments blaming the driver are inappropriate. I see someone on a bike dart into the path of a car on a regular basis and am only surprised this doesn't happen more often. 20 feet is not a long distance for a car to travel before stopping.

Have some respect for the people involved.
Do you really have to hit someone yourself to understand the meaning of ACCIDENT?

By Q333 (161), Southampton on Jun 17, 13 5:46 PM
This is only an accident when YOUR loved one isn't killed. This was a precious young life. Find a different place to shame people who are mourning a young child. This is NOT the place for you here! SHAME ON YOU, AND SHAME ON THE 9 PEOPLE WHO THOUGHT IT NECESSARY TO LIKE YOUR PRETENTIOUS COMMENT.
By just breath (82), yuck on Jun 22, 13 8:54 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By just breath (82), yuck on Jun 22, 13 8:58 PM
What "light sentence", and what felony conviction?
By But I'm a blank! (1283), Hampton Bays on Jun 22, 13 10:09 PM
Caroline Goss, the Mattituck woman accused of killing a Hampton Bays boy while driving drunk last summer(2010).

Q333's response to another child getting killed on a bike.
By LI native (127), east moriches on Jun 22, 13 10:25 PM
I'm quite upset at people being so sensitive about who may be at fault... Yes kids are not always thinking about consequences . Maybe this young girl really didn't understand the rules of the road or perhaps the drivers reaction time was compromised because of AGE ...sorry but it's true . I work with the elderly and no one will ever convince me that the reaction time of at 73 yr old person is the same as a person 60 and under . And as I said before there are other hazards on the road such as young ...more
By Biba (564), East Hampton on Jun 17, 13 7:17 PM
1 member liked this comment
By harlee24 (7), southampton on Jun 18, 13 7:27 AM
2 members liked this comment
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