On the Radar: Funerals in Hudson drownings, Japan restrictions, car award
A memorial is left at the site where a mother and her three children drowned in a minivan in the Hudson River.
April 21st, 2011
06:42 AM ET

On the Radar: Funerals in Hudson drownings, Japan restrictions, car award

Hudson drownings burials: Lashanda Armstrong, who killed herself and her three young children by driving her minivan into the Hudson River last week, will be buried in Spring Valley, New York, on Thursday, but relatives' plans to bury her children alongside her will not be carried out, according to media reports.

The father of the three children, Jean Pierre, announced Wednesday the funeral and burial of the children would be separate from that of their mother.

“After consulting with the Armstrong family, I have decided that the funeral arrangements for Landen, Lance and Laianna should be separate from that of Lashanda’s. My deepest sympathy goes out to La’Shaun and the Armstrong family," Pierre said in a statement released by his lawyer, according to a report in the Poughkeepsie Journal. "I ask that I be given the opportunity to grieve the loss of my three children privately," he said.

That angered Armstrong's aunt, Angela Gilliam, according to a report in the New York Daily News.

"She should be buried with her children, regardless of what she did," the Daily News quoted Gilliam as saying.

The children, an 11-month-old girl, a 2-year-old boy and a 5-year-old boy, will be buried Monday.

Another child, 10-year-old Lashaun Armstrong, escaped the vehicle as it was sinking in the Hudson.

Nuclear zone restrictions: On Friday, Japan will begin enforcing an evacuation order on a 20-kilometer zone around the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, a top government official said.

The restriction –in place since the early days of the nuclear disaster - has often been ignored.

Many of the about 78,000 people who have homes in the evacuation zone have gone back in recent weeks to retrieve belongings, and check on farms and businesses.

No one will be allowed within 3 kilometers of the crippled nuclear facility and entry within 20 kilometers of the plant will be highly regulated, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano told reporters Thursday.

People who temporarily return to their homes, businesses and farms must wear a protective suit and ride into the restricted zone on a designated bus.

Car of the Year: The winner of the World Car of the Year will be announced at the New York International Auto Show on Thursday.

Finalists are the Audi A8, the BMW 5 Series and the Nissan LEAF, whittled down from an original list of 39 entries.

A panel of 66 automotive journalists from 24 countries votes for the winner.

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Filed under: 2011 tsunami • Auto Industry • Japan • New York
soundoff (129 Responses)
  1. The Hillary HYPE

    Is Hillary Clinton senile, wistfull or just with amnesia? She says that Iran cannot take credit for the "Arab all seasons of the future".... Is American media just sheep herding on this? So I went looking and found the comment below and realised just how disconnected from facts or informed public opinion the elderly can be. (ruetttteeerssss)

    Yes, “The United States has a lot of friends in the region,” but almost all are backward tyrants and religious fanatics. Iran should certainly be given credit for being the first country in the region to overthrow its despotic ruler. Granted that the current Iranian government is not ideal, but certainly it is more responsible for the current developments than the US which supported Mubarak and Ben Ali till the last moment when it realized that they are going to lose power.

    April 21, 2011 at 7:02 am | Report abuse |
  2. Joey

    Allow me to send my condolences to members of this family that lost a mother and three children.
    I empathize with all their separate positions.
    Jean Pierre is the father of these children. Were I he, I would also want to bury my children away from their mother, although I feel sure that he retains some love for her in spite of the situation.

    April 21, 2011 at 7:06 am | Report abuse |
    • Mmmmm

      I was thinking the father may have been the reason for the desparate drive off by the distraught mother. A funeral shouldn't be a time for contention and grudges. To make that kind of statement with loss of life is about the selfish living not the dead.

      April 21, 2011 at 7:18 am | Report abuse |
  3. Joey

    Mmmmm,
    Good morning.
    I'm sure that blame could be placed on both sides of this couple's argument, and contentious behavior should be absent from funerals.
    However, the father is still alive, and he will visit the tombs of his children many times.
    Life goes on.

    April 21, 2011 at 7:29 am | Report abuse |
    • Mmmmm

      The dad should have bury them together...it looks like he still sowing seeds of agression and involving the surviving child in this last act against the decease mother. The aunt is right.
      Really a terrible ending for the 10 year old.

      April 21, 2011 at 11:18 am | Report abuse |
  4. Joey

    Hillary Clinton is not senile; she is a strong and realistic leader.
    There is a scene in a work by Henry James where a cardinal tells a young man, "we are in the world."

    April 21, 2011 at 7:37 am | Report abuse |
  5. jadeix

    The father is being selfish inconsiderate. He should be sensitive and think about the surviving 10 year old instead of himself. He is probably the reason she took the plunge.

    April 21, 2011 at 7:46 am | Report abuse |
    • mancld

      Do not blame him for this. If he was causing her distress she could have taken the children and gone to relatives or the police. She decided to try to hurt him by not only killing herself but their four children. As a father I can understand where he is coming from and in his place would do the same thing. You would not want the person who murdered your kids to be buried next to them.

      April 21, 2011 at 9:35 am | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      You must write for the Lifetime network, of course its the mans fault? A man can make a woman do all sorts of things , and her little mind can be controlled so easy, its the mans fault!

      April 21, 2011 at 10:06 am | Report abuse |
    • Val

      Did you ever stop to think what it would be like for this boy to visit the graves of his mother AND the three siblings IMAGINING HIS NAME ENGRAVED on a tombstone along side the others wondering why he should've been the one to survive and they didn't? Why should he have to have a constant reminder of what SHE DID every time he sees her grave?? For his sake I hope that he doesn't go to her grave for a long time. I was 15 when I lost my mother to suicide and it never served any good purpose to stand there and look at that granite marker facing the stark truth that she was dead and not just absent. The mother MURDERED her poor innocent children and for that they deserve better than to be lying beside the very person who callously took their lives by drowning them in the cold, dirty water of the Hudson. Although she was a victim in a sense before her murderous decision......she was also a very irresponsible adult to keep procreating with a man that she knew she couldn't change, but knew she could HURT HIM by killing his kids. That's all those kids were to her in the end was a TOOL to get back at a man. They were probably a TOOL ALL ALONG considering how fast they came and the names that she chose for them to PLEASE HIM. Clearly she worshiped the man, but two selfish people don't a great relationship make.

      April 21, 2011 at 8:37 pm | Report abuse |
  6. cindy

    The mother murdered his children. Should he have to see here every time he visits graves his children's graves? I don't think this is a selfish wish.

    April 21, 2011 at 7:50 am | Report abuse |
    • Nadine

      This is clearly a case where there are no winners. However, I think the Father of the children does have the right to decide their final resting place. This will be a place where he will probably be spending a lot of time in the future and I doubt he wants to stand near the grave of his kids' murderer. I don't think he should be made to feel bad about his decision after all it was their dear Mother who decided to end their lives. We as adults need to be made to take responsibility for our actions, killing your kids because their Father may have or may not have cheated that is just idiotic on any day of the week. Once you decide to have kids that means it's time for you to GROW UP and make grown up decisions.......

      April 21, 2011 at 10:55 am | Report abuse |
    • debbie

      bravo to you. It's nobody's business and nobody on this message board should be attempting to throw guilt towards the father. He will make the decisions that are right for him and his surviving child and none of us can alter that decision. Pray for the family in their time of need, or at least send your condolences, but anybody that takes the life of another does not get my sympathy – their family does, but that's as far as it goes. Peace to all

      April 21, 2011 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
  7. cindy

    have to see her grave

    April 21, 2011 at 7:51 am | Report abuse |
  8. lisa

    I send my condolences to the armstrong family for there loss, its sad when a father holds a grudge towards the mother when he is part of the cause of this tragedy. No matter how this tragedy happened she should be buried with her children she is the one who worked and sacrificed her life to take care of them and the one person that was suppose to be her support person failed her, she still loved her children no matter what. He should be thinking of the sole survivor when he wants to visit his siblings and his mother.

    April 21, 2011 at 7:51 am | Report abuse |
    • Sean

      @ Lisa

      This woman murdered three of his children. And you call this a grudge? Have you no perspective? YES it does matter how this tragedy happened. SHE did not sacrifice her life for these children.. they are DEAD. The only reason one survived is because he ESCAPED. This sole survivor should not be forced to see the grave of the woman who tried to murder him and succeed with his brothers and sisters. If he chooses to forgive her that is his choice. A choice he can exercise by visiting her site at another location.

      P.S. For all you know she failed him in the relationship aspect. She was after all crazy enough to murder her family. I for one don’t claim to have special insider knowledge of their relationship.

      April 21, 2011 at 9:35 am | Report abuse |
    • Nicole

      @Sean

      I am glad that you and your family have never had to deal with a debilitating mental health problem called severe depression. Consider yourself extremely blessed. Those of us that have dealt with this can say that we can not judge this women by her actions because it is quite obvious that she was not in her right mind...depression can do that, cloud our once rational judgment. For all we know she thought she WAS doing what was best for her children. Maybe she didn't have the support around her that you, Sean, seem blessed to have.

      April 21, 2011 at 10:14 am | Report abuse |
    • Imhere

      If two adults have conflict that is between the two of them. No one forced this woman to kill her children. That was a decision SHE made for herself. It is ridiculous to blame the father for a decision that this woman made. Any woman who puts her own pain and her own feelings before the welfare of her children doesn't deserve my pity, and if she could go as far as to KILL them – that makes it even worse. I completely agree with the father's decision to bury his children away from her. She gave up the right to my compassion when she murdered those innocent children.

      April 21, 2011 at 11:19 am | Report abuse |
    • Kristen

      @Nicole
      How dare you diminish Sean's perspective! This woman KILLED her 3 children! What part of that do you not understand? Good God – sad that she was depressed – but to take 3 innocent lives...no excuse WHATSOEVER. And for you to demean his comments and marginalize her horrendous crime is DISGUSTING. I have dealt with depression and have had family members deal with it as well ...but to use it to absolve this woman of her crime and condescend to another poster is beyond the pale. You should be ashamed of yourself.

      April 21, 2011 at 11:22 am | Report abuse |
  9. Eliana

    @Mmmmm, the father was the reason this adult woman did such a horrific thing? What a thing to say. While he may have contributed to whatever dejected feelings, she's responsible for her own actions, no one else. Who cares about contention, grudges and being selfish? Valid concerns, but malarkey at the moment. The fact that you can muster even a shred of empathy for this deplorable, murderous woman is admirable... But the father is the one who is still alive (so is the 10 year old son, imagine how HE must feel), he reserves the right to do what brings him comfort/piece of mind. She's dead, I don't think she cares where she's buried.

    April 21, 2011 at 7:55 am | Report abuse |
    • Mmmmm

      Elainer, I'm sorry but you're sounding off like "the other woman." Real life broken homes and marriages and aboandonment aren't the tabloid version or neither the even Steven war of the roses played out on tv or movies. A critical building block in society, the family, just got snuff out.
      Mom with kids abandoned and considering the lack of charity, no jobs, no social support for people want to end assistance of every kind...you take defense for a man who refuse to uphold his responsibility as father and provider...

      April 21, 2011 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |
  10. Eliana

    @jadeix, you're right, somebody should think of the surviving 10 year old. Thanks to mommy dearest, he has a lifetime of guilt and other countless effects to look forward to. Where these people are buried is beside the point... it's an insignificant detail. Frankly, just because she was the mother doesn't automatically give her the right to be buried with her children. Being their mother slips into spot #2 beyond being their murderer.

    April 21, 2011 at 8:00 am | Report abuse |
    • Nay

      100% AGREE

      April 21, 2011 at 8:18 am | Report abuse |
    • Mmmmm

      Now you're judging...so put yourself in her shoes...her decision is a reflection of the coldness of her community who could she call...could she have called you...mothers should have to jump off the bridge, drive into the water because they don't have recourse. It was only a short time ago that you can get a paper judgement...but we all know if you don't want to you don't have to pay...

      April 21, 2011 at 11:46 am | Report abuse |
    • Mmmmm

      Correction: shouldn't have to jump off

      April 21, 2011 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
  11. lisa

    all of a sudden he wants to be financial responsible to bury his children, but when they were alive he couldnt pay child support to help raise these kids, he cant handle the guilt of pushing her to that point after banging on her door for 30 to 45 min calling for her and cursing at her, he should share some of the blame, its sad when a woman cant trust the father of her kids after he lets his child wonder the street in the cold just to go to the store and come back with another woman.

    April 21, 2011 at 8:06 am | Report abuse |
    • Sean

      @Lisa

      No one is calling this guy a saint. But he isn’t the one who murdered his children. NO ONE forced this woman’s hand. She acted on free will. Your man hating on this blog is very inappropriate (a term I don't often use). The fact you attack one of the victims and defend a murder says a lot about you as a person. If I were religious I’d pray for you.

      April 21, 2011 at 9:43 am | Report abuse |
    • Mmmmm

      This man is a murderer...killed the life of his marriage...he killed the life and joy of the domestic home...he killed the life of the children and their happiness long before the drive off the ramp incident...and he expected someone else to carry his responsibilty...

      April 21, 2011 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
  12. Eliana

    Wow, so many people sugar coating with politically correct language, "the tragedy." It was tragic, but it was murder. The father is "a failure as a support system"? The mother was the support system of those kids – epic fail on her part. Amazing how critical everyone is being of him. One might presume that he already feels guilty and has a lifetime left to manage it as he tries to help his son do the same.

    April 21, 2011 at 8:07 am | Report abuse |
  13. sandyk

    unlike the other woman who drowned her children she did stay in the van, so she must have wanted to die. Her children had NO choice. the son who escaped now has to live with the many emotions that will haunt him. i agree with the different burial places. the key will be with the father and the mother`s family, I pray they do not engage in base behavior and allow the son a chance to heal.

    April 21, 2011 at 8:17 am | Report abuse |
  14. Tony the Prophet

    In retrospect she must have been a single mother with four kids in New York State!, New York State Department of Social Services does absolutely nothing to help these woman and nothing to go after fathers whom don’t pay child support. So in part New York State and society is at fault for not having strong policy and programs in place to help the meek, the sick, and disadvantageous. New York State is a discriminatory State, anytime an individual seeks help at Social Services because they are down on their luck, they will be looked at with this ideology. Our Governments has set up the conditions where many people and families have been impoverished, loss of jobs , Property taxes out of control and unaffordable, no programs to fall back on and regain comfort, Shame on you New York State for not taking care of your most precious assets “ we the people”

    April 21, 2011 at 8:22 am | Report abuse |
    • Stiletta

      well said @Tony the Prophet. The families should also take some responsibility as well. Families tend to not speak up when they know something isn't right. And based on interviews, they saw a pattern of issues leading up to the murder/suicide. I've never had post partum or any form of depression or psychiatric issues but I believe it is real. I feel horrible for this child and it's very sad to say that he will likely not get the help he needs because he's surrounded by a group of unintelligent and very unaware adults plus a social service group with the same unintelligence. Bless his heart.

      April 21, 2011 at 12:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • wholly33

      Thats bs! she murdered her children and thats a fact. If those of you wanna ignore that than go right ahead. If the father had done this, you women would have no sympathy for him, but give the mother is the one who MURDERED the children, you wanna turn the other cheek or come up with an excuse and blame the father. Not saying he doesn't share some of the blame, but my God! she killed their children. Call it like it is and quit taking up for the murderer just because she is a woman. If her mental illness were the case than why don't we go to the prisons and reevaluate all the Men who are there for similar cases and just say "aww he had a mental illness so can we get him some help" BS!!! Plus if she had such a mental illness, than what was going to stop her from doing rather he was supportive to his wife or not... after all it is a mental illness. Jeffery dahmer had a mental illness and no one wasted any time putting him in away. So stop the bs, defending her!

      April 21, 2011 at 9:57 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Joey

    Why are any of us so caught up in "support" (meaning money, to most) of these children who didn't choose their parents?
    Children are not properties.
    A child trying to live in that kind of home cannot help himself at all except with psychological escape mechanisms. The child there lives in terror.
    The father is BEGINNING his recovery my separating issues and graves. I hope he lives.
    I hope the surviving child lives to enjoy life as much as he can.
    Don't talk about "a Mother's right" to sleep with her children.
    She killed them.
    They didn't ask to be born: it was her decision to give them life, such as it was that they got.
    I haven't seen this aspect reported, but I'd bet five dollars that the children partially supported the mother through "their" social programs' monthly payments.
    No mention has been made of how much alcohol or some other drug was used by the parents that night. Two beers?
    A Mother's place and rights, indeed!

    April 21, 2011 at 8:33 am | Report abuse |
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