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San Francisco parks worker 'devastated' he ran over woman

SAN FRANCISCO — The husband of a woman who was fatally run over in a San Francisco park says he's focused on how to make it through each day, honor his wife and be a single dad.

Vegar Svanemyr said he's grateful for the support he's received from family and friends since his wife Christine was killed last week, according to the San Francisco Chronicle (http://bit.ly/18mfTXR ).

"I'm experiencing a strange blend of total loss and total gratitude," said the Norwegian-born Svanemyr. "I want to be sure whatever I do from here has value and meaning."

Christine Svanemyr was sunbathing with her 11-month-old daughter and dog in Holly Park on Sept. 5, when she was hit by a truck driven by Thomas Burnoski, a San Francisco Recreation and Parks employee.

The 35-year-old mother was a West Virginia native who earned multiple college degrees, trained life coaches and belonged to an African dance group. They met in Salt Lake City, where they were studying Zen Buddhism.

"Someone told me that grief is really chaotic and never what you expect," Vegar Svanemyr said. "One moment I feel OK and then it just washes over me. I feel like I am in this dream state."

Burnoski, 57, has been arrested on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter and felony hit-and-run. Prosecutors have not decided whether to file charges in the case.

Robert Waggener, an attorney for Burnoski, told the Chronicle his client was devastated when he learned Svanemyr was killed.

In a statement, Burnoski said his actions caused Svanemyr's death and "there is nothing I can do to bring her back." He called what happened in the Bernal Heights park "a tragic accident."

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