MARLTON, N.J. (CBS) — Friends and family are taking action in memory of a crash victim in Marlton. They’ve launched a desperate campaign to change parking rules they say led to the death of their loved one.
Twenty-five-year-old Tori Gerstenacker died on Sept. 28, struck and killed while crossing a busy intersection on Route 70 at the Shoppes of Elmwood, forced to park about a half-mile from her condo at the Delancey Place in Evesham Township.
“Through anything bad that happened in our lives, we were just there for each other and it’s definitely hard not having her there now,” Jordan Ramaglia said. “She was just walking home like normal. It all could have been avoided if this rule wasn’t even a thing.”
That rule Gerstenacker’s roommate Ramaglia is trying to change is one which restricts commercial parking inside the community.
Gerstenacker drove a Ford F-150, a company truck with a logo about the size of a piece of printer paper.
In late August, the HOA started enforcing the rule. Gerstenacker received a notice telling her that the vehicle would be towed.
“She obviously had to figure out something else to do because that was the truck she drove every day,” Ramaglia said. “So that’s why she started parking here.”
Within that month, Ramaglia says Gerstenacker planned to try to get the rules changed, but she died before she could make it happen.
Now Ramaglia is following in her footsteps, creating an online petition asking for the HOA to reconsider their parking rules.
“She drove a regular F-150 that anybody would drive on a daily basis,” Ramaglia said. “Make it so they make exceptions for people that live there and have normal vehicles.”
That petition already has more than 6,000 signatures.
“I understand if it had equipment on it. If it had ladders on it, if it was big and obnoxious. But in this situation, it wasn’t,” Ramaglia said. “You pay to live in a community. You should be able to park the car that gets you money to be able to live there.”
Eyewitness News reached out to the attorney who represents the HOA and received the following response.
“We were saddened to hear of the tragic death of one of our residents, and our heartfelt condolences go out to her family and friends. At this time the Association can make no further comment pending the completion of our investigation of this matter.”