Hudson Valley Cafe Owner Killed While Protecting Animals
A Hudson Valley cafe owner who loved animals lost her life while trying to help wild animals.
On Thursday around 9:15 p.m., Hope A. McLucas, 54, of Pleasant Valley got out of her white 2006 BMW 325 on State Route 82 in the Town of Washington to attend to raccoons on or near the roadway and was standing in the northbound lane when she was struck and killed by a northbound 2011 Toyota Tundra, police say.
McLucas was pronounced deceased on scene by responding emergency medical personnel. New York State Police found her BMW parked southbound on State Route 82 near South Road in the center of her lane of travel with her vehicle flashers on.
McLucas was the longtime owner of Tail Wind's Cafe at Sky Acres Airport. Friends say she loved and cared for many animals.
"She cared for her own - several parrots, dogs and a cat, and, added to those, Hope also rescued and rehabilitated orphaned wildlife, always lending a hand when too many babies came in to the springtime overburdened different groups that do this work," Paula Eva Young wrote on Facebook. "She cared for these wild babies in the same way she cared for all her animals; with a gentle, caring and capable hand. It was that level of care and concern that motivated her to stop this past Wednesday night in Millbrook, on Rte 82. That compelled her to get out of her car in order to assist -doubtlessly- raccoons in need, (be them babies, adults, or a family.)"
Her birthday is coming up and prior to her death, McLucas was holding a birthday fundraiser on Facebook asking for donations for the Old Friends Senior Dog Sanctuary.
The police investigation into the accident is on-going, but there are no criminal charges at this time. No information was released about the driver of the Toyota.