Family and friends of a man accidentally killed in a towing accident gathered Sunday night for a candlelight vigil.
Elias Konwufine died Wednesday in the Sienna Green Condo complex in Lauderhill after approaching a tow truck driver who was preparing to move his vehicle. He was the dean of the Keiser University's business school.
"For him to have died this kind of death, it's like a nightmare," said one woman. "We can't get over it. He's a good neighbor, somebody you want to be around."
Afolabi Morakinyo told Local 10's Sasha Andrade he remembers the last thing his neighbor said.
"The only last words he said to me was, 'I couldn't breath.' And it's still in my head every moment," said Morakinyo.
Many attendees said they have had issues with the tow truck driver who ran over Konwufin with his own car while towing it away.
“They've been quite aggressive,” said one person. “They need to realize that once a life is lost, it's lost forever.”
"It doesn't make sense that someone is illegally parked, so they say, and dies,” said Devin Stewart.
In spite of the visible pain, Sunday night’s vigil was about unity, not anger.
"When there's a tragedy, you feel motivated to do something,” said Stewart.
Konwufin's neighbors gathered in front of his home for the vigil, and were surrounded by his grieving widow and her three children.
“It's hard to look at her, it's hard to think about how she's going to face the future,” said one person.
For the first time, a family member spoke publicly about the tragic accident. Peter Konwufine described his brother as "the light in the whole of our community."
The brother also thanked the neighbors for their constant support.
“Oh, we really appreciate it. It's a lot of comfort to the family. We really appreciate it,” said Peter Konwufine.
The wake will be on Saturday, Jan. 26th at 6 p.m. at Fred Hunter Funeral Home in Davie.
The victim's family has established a bank account at Wells Fargo for the community to make donations. The account number is 5894053775. The routing number is 061000227. The account is titled "Pa Elias Knowufine Benefit Memorial."
The family told Local 10 deposit notifications can be sent to the following three people:
- Simon Cho at (301) 332-6662
- Fogang Mbangwana at (573) 356-3887
- Neh Atefor at (678) 234-7209