UPPER MARLBORO, Md. (WJLA) – The husband of a 69-year-old La Plata, Md. woman who was killed after being struck by a county bus said Friday that he forgives the driver responsible.
Patsy Stokes Burton was crossing the street near the intersection of Main and Water streets in Upper Marlboro around 10:30 a.m. Thursday when she was suddenly hit by the bus and dragged roughly 20 feet, according to police. The mother of four, who worked four jobs, was walking mail from the doctor’s office where she worked to a nearby post office when she was hit.
A security camera perched on the building where she worked captured her death. Witnesses were shaken up and said the bus driver apparently didn’t see Burton crossing the street.
"Some man came running up saying 'Hey, hey, hey, hey!'" recalled witness Joshua Smith.
"Then [the driver of the bus] finally backed up, and from what I seen, she was just laying there, lifeless," Deandre Williams added.
A billowing sheet covered Burton's body as it laid on the pavement for hours Thursday, investigators working around her as they combed the bus for evidence.
"We're handling it now as if it were a crime scene," Chief Michael Gonella of the Upper Marlboro Police Department said Thursday, explaining that the department’s preliminary investigation determined Burton had been walking in the crosswalk correctly with the streetlight.
Mack Burton, Patsy Burton’s husband of 51 years, said faith is helping him get through this difficult time.
“When she left yesterday, she told me to have a good day, and I told her to have a good day,” Mack Burton recalled. “She left, and then I got the news.”
Though Mack Burton and his family are now grieving, he says he isn’t angry—that being so wouldn’t bring his wife back.
“Both of us, we knew our day was coming. Yesterday just happened to be her day,” he said. “I have no vendetta against that driver. Like I said, she was just out doing her job. It happened, and not a thing in the world anybody can do about it.”
Mack Burton said he will pray for the driver, who has not been identified, and that he hopes to one day meet her and offer her words of comfort.
“She’s the one that’s suffering more than I am,” he said.
As of Friday, no charges had been filed against the bus driver in the case.