Her 16-year-old daughter was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, as was the driver of the auto.
Diane Aluska was enjoying some time with her 16-year-old daughter Jenna on Mother's Day, walking home with her from church and stopping at a local bakery to pick up some treats for the day.
Police confirmed that the 2005 Toyota Corolla was being driven by 80-year-old motorist Ann Riolo.
"She did not put the vehicle in drive, thought she had, and hit the gas", said Suffolk County Police Detective Sgt. James Murphy.
Diane Aluska, 55, of Lindenhurst, was pronounced dead at a hospital after she was struck by a auto in Lindenhurst on Sunday morning, May 14, 2017, and pinned under the vehicle, Suffolk police said.
The mother and daughter were taken to Good Samaritan Hospital where Diane passed away. Diane died at the hospital and her daughter is listed in stable condition.
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"Diane Aluska ... put her hand on her daughter's shoulder and attempted to push her out of the way", the officer additionally noted.
Jenna Aluska and Riolo were taken to the same hospital for non-life-threatening injuries, police said.
Tracey Morelli noted on social media that she sat behind Diane and Jenna during mass and was only "a few steps ahead of them" when the accident happened. "She was everything to us.I can't put it into words". He said his daughter was doing as well as could be expected - but on Monday morning, he had to do the unthinkable and tell her that her mother had died. "I can't believe she's passed".
There's nothing more powerful than a mother's love.
Her father asked the community to remember Diane Aluska as a lovely person who loved life and her family.
Aluska's neighbor, Jim Conrad, said he just saw the mother-daughter duo happily chatting on Friday.