Shelton business owner creates GoFundMe for woman whose car exploded

The 19-year-old Gateway nursing student says she and her boyfriend were using the car when it caught fire. 

Abby Del Vecchio and Angelica Toruno

May 8, 2023, 12:33 PM

Updated 342 days ago

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A local business owner is calling on the community to help a young Bridgeport woman whose car caught fire while at a TD Bank drive-through ATM in Shelton.
Leeann Davila-Bernhard was making a deposit at the bank Sunday evening when she saw flames coming from underneath her car hood.
"It exploded like maybe two or three times, a big bang. The whole roof of outside TD Bank collapsed," she said.
The 19-year-old is a full-time nursing student and a full-time employee at Russell Speeders. She had only just saved up enough money to buy the car a month ago and she is struggling to figure out her transportation once again.
"I love that car so much and I was so happy when I got it," said Davila-Bernhard.
She had no time to grab anything from the car, everything inside went up in flames, too.
"It's really, really heavy on me right now. I just can't believe that it happened," said Davila-Bernhard.
One witness is giving Davila-Bernhard and her boyfriend, who was in the car at the time but got out before it exploded, some solace.
"Let's try to help you out, we can do something, we can move forward from this," said her boyfriend, Randy Lora.
"You know it was her first car, and it just touched our heart. So, we would love for everyone to come together to help her," said Davy Levy, owner of Hawley Lane Shoes.
Hawley Lane Shoes has started a GoFundMe in hopes to get herself back on her feet and behind a wheel.


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