GABBY Pirpinias’s three children say they remain “devastated” more than three years after she died in a head-on crash in Wodonga.
“The person who did this must pay for his actions,” her eldest child, Barbara Hilsaca, told the Wodonga Coroner’s Court yesterday.
Mrs Hilsaca insisted her plea was “not about revenge” on the man who ended her mother’s life and caused such pain to her family.
It was simply about justice.
Mrs Hilsaca stood up in court to read out her victim impact statement.
In it, she conveyed the dreadful impact losing her mother had had, how it had tipped her into depression characterised by anxiety.
“When I was told she had been killed, in that one moment my whole world had been shattered,” she said.
Her mother’s death had left Mrs Hilsaca susceptible to panic attacks that had been so severe she felt she could no longer breathe.
“I imagine what my mum must have felt in her very last moments,” she said.
Counselling and medication had made her cope better, but her loss remained clear yesterday as she told her mother’s story while trying not to break down completely.
“She should be here happy with her family not in a cold, lonely grave,” she said.
Prosecutor Andy Moore read out statements from her brother, Andrew Pirpinias, and sister, Michelle Pirpinias.
Mr Pirpinias said his mother was a dearly loved grandmother to his children, aged 6 and 4.
“They continue to ask today about their precious Nana,” he said.
Miss Pirpinias “felt physically ill” on hearing her mother had died.
What made that worse was knowing she’d have to tell her father.
“Not a single day passes where I don’t think of his life and the fact he lives on his own in quite an isolated home,” she said.