NORTH HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH)– On Sunday, several dozen motorcycle riders gathered in North Haven to remember a woman whose life was tragically cut short. And the ride raised money for a good cause, in her honor.
The motorcycle riders at the event had one thing in common, they are paying tribute to Antoinette Venditti Bruce of East Haven.
In March of 2011, she was kidnapped and killed by a co-worker. She was 35-years-old.
“Lit up the room as soon as she walked in without even opening her mouth,” said Maria Ceniccola.
Maria Ceniccola is a close friend of Antoinette’s and the organizer of the 4th annual “Poker Run” motorcycle ride in her honor.
“It was a closed casket so I didn’t have any closure. Today I do. Every day I have the Poker Run is closure for me,” said Ceniccola.
Antoinette’s husband was also part of Sunday’s event. In fact, he’s riding on what used to be his wife’s motorcycle.
“It’s nice to see all the support of the people in memory of my wife. This is what she liked to do so we do it,” said Chris Bruce.
“It goes to Joyful Heart foundation in New York and we have Faith Haven in New Haven and it deals with battered women, kids and men,” said Ceniccola.
“She always did charities for MS and for breast cancer so this is something that she would’ve liked,” said Bruce.
The money raised will be split between both battered women organizations, showing that good can sometimes come from life’s saddest moments.
If you were unable to take part in today’s ride and would like to support the battered woman organizations, just visit the follow Go Fund Me site at http://www.gofundme.com/896EXC