From Newsday, April 4:

Wife killed in hit-and-run after seder
Maurichiu Burman, 73, struggled to his feet in the middle of the road, injured by a car that moments earlier had struck him and his wife as they returned from a family Seder on the first night of Passover. He fell to the ground before he could reach his dying wife, the woman from whom he was inseparable in life.

They were both schoolteachers who together raised three children, saw the birth of six grandchildren and emigrated from Moldova, a former Soviet republic. Reyzya Burman, also 73, died Monday night of her injuries.

The couple had gotten out of a car driven by one of their daughters and was crossing Ninth Avenue in Borough Park in front of their apartment building between 53rd and 54th Streets as their daughter pulled away. Police said they were struck by the passenger side of a gold-colored car about 10:30 p.m.

The driver fled. A side mirror was found, police said.

Maurichiu Burman was in stable condition Tuesday afternoon at Lutheran Medical Center, said Neal Gorman, a hospital spokesman. A hospital employee said Burman would stay overnight for observation. The couple’s daughter, Svetlana Nikitenko, released a statement asking the media for privacy and saying “Our first and immediate concern is with our family and the recovery of our father.”

A witness to the aftermath of the accident, Albert Kvint, 26, a jeweler from Ocean Parkway, was walking when he saw Maurichiu Burman stand up and fall as he tried to approach his wife.

“He was saying he was cold,” Kvint said. “Then he got up again and another man from the building was holding him.”

Tuesday morning a white plastic shopping bag filled with leftover food and a broken plate were in the street next to a residue of blood.

Residents and staff at the building, a low-income housing complex for the elderly, run by Catholic Charities, said the couple was devoted to each other.

“They were still in love,” said Sophia Shteyl, a social worker for the charity. The pair would walk to the park together every morning, where Reyzya Burman would watch her husband play tennis. The Burmans moved to the close-knit building, where they were known as Roza and Misha, after emigrating from Moldova about 10 years ago. They were ethnically Russian, residents said.

“Why did this happen? Why to them?” said Larisa Kudchin, 75, a neighbor, as she shed tears in Shteyl’s office. “Why didn’t he stop the car to help them?”

The couple taught high school in Moldova, which lies between Ukraine and Romania, Shteyl said. Reyzya Burman taught math and her husband taught Russian literature.

“This is an unbelievable horror,” said Yakov Kranitsky, 76, another neighbor. “She was an amazing person. She used to be a teacher and she continued to live her life as a teacher.”

There were no skid marks on the street, suggesting the driver didn’t try to stop, police said. Anyone with information is asked to call 800-577-TIPS.

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