Prayers of devotion have continued for the souls of 61-year-old Carina Bontilao Kubow and her 92-year-old mother, Angela Vilbar Bontilao.
It has been a week since both were involved in a head-on collision late Thursday night, after leaving church services.
The family says they are at a total loss.
“My mom wore a lot of hats in the family. She really was a huge mainstay,” said Carina’s eldest son, Shane Kubow. “And my grandma was the matriarch, the leader of this entire huge clan of just really diverse people, really funny people, and my family has come together in a way I can’t imagine.”
The Bontilao’s children say that even despite being in her 90s, she remained vibrant and active.
“She’s not ready to go yet. I look at her and she could go for a 100,” said son Tony. “She was looking forward to watch the playoff game last Sunday with the Warriors and she’s still taking care of the garden in the backyard, and the front yard, that’s her passion.”
Jeanique Dioso was the driver that evening and says it has been difficult dealing with the situation, mentally and physically — but credits her family and friends for all the support.
“During the first day it was really difficult for me to face anybody at all. I was just confided at home and it took me two days to face the family and talk about my experience, about everything I remembered,” said Dioso, Bontilao’s granddaughter. “It helped me cope, I guess, emotionally because what happened was really traumatic for me.”
According to the California Highway Patrol, 26-year-old Sunnyvale resident Vinod Bonthu was the driver that struck the Bontilao vehicle when he lost control of his car and jumped into lanes traveling in the opposite direction.
Bonthu was released from the hospital yesterday and is currently in custody.
During yesterday’s arraignment he was charged with two counts of vehicular manslaughter, with gross negligence and two counts of driving under the influence.
“I don’t think any punishment for this guy will ever bring any of that back but I do want to see justice be done as far as the extent of the law, and as far as reparations for my family, as much as humanly possible.”
A GoFundMe account has been set up by the family.
They hope to raise $30,000, which will go toward funeral services, medical costs for the two passengers, and legal expenses.
The Bontilao and Kubow family also sends this message to everyone getting on the road.
“Please do not drink and drive, as it affects the lives of the family and the lives of the people,” said Maribelle O’Keefe, Bontilao’s daughter.