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Rutland Remembers Hit And Run Victim

Mary Jane Outslay - friends called her Jane - raised five kids, worked as a nurse, and along with her husband of nearly 50 years, owned a popular pizza restaurant in Rutland - a restaurant that was closed today.

That’s because friends and family were gathering to remember the 71-year-old Mendon woman who was struck and killed last week by a hit and run driver.

Nancy Morris, a nurse who worked alongside Outslay at a local nursing home, called her a great friend.  “She was wonderful, outgoing and had this wonderful smile that would light up a room,” says Morris.  “She’s going to be missed terribly.”

Nancy Bishop, another nursing colleague called Outlsay an extremely caring individual.   “She was a lovely person, had family she cared for, she cared for her residents and her residents’ families.  She was just an overall wonderful lady,” says Bishop, “and it’s sad that she had to meet her end this way.”

Oustlay was struck last Wednesday night after leaving a downtown restaurant with a friend.  

53-year-old Christopher Sullivan has been identified as the driver who fled the scene.   From 1988 to 2007, Sullivan worked as the City Attorney for Rutland. 

Police say they will be working with prosecutors from the State Attorney General’s Office to determine possible criminal charges.   And they say the investigation is ongoing as they assess forensic evidence and witness statements.

But so far, no charges have been filed.  And that rankles many of Jane Outslay’s friends, like Nancy Bishop.  “I really feel that there’s been neglect up to this point,” says Bishop.  “It seems like how many days have gone by and nothing has happened.  You just have a feeling that things will be covered up.”

Rutland Police Chief James Baker said during a press conference last week that the fact that Christopher Sullivan worked for the city for 19 years has no bearing on the investigation.  Baker said the department needs to gather evidence based on facts, not rumors and that takes time.   How long remains unclear.

One in five Vermonters is considered elderly. But what does being elderly even mean — and what do Vermonters need to know as they age? I’m looking into how aging in Vermont impacts living essentials such as jobs, health care and housing. And also how aging impacts the stuff of life: marriage, loss, dating and sex.
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