Calgary Herald

Griev­ing man urges driv­ers to slow down


Shelly Pauletto didn’t have to go to work on Thurs­day.

But the ded­i­cated em­ployee de­cided to go in for a half-day at LandSo­lu­tions, where she was em­ployed as an ac­coun­tant.

Af­ter fin­ish­ing work that af­ter­noon, Pauletto called her 11-year-old daugh­ter Mady to tell her she would be home soon and bring lunch for her daugh­ter and Mady’s nine-yearold brother Jaxx, who both had the day off school. She never ar­rived. Af­ter leav­ing work around 12:40 p.m., Pauletto crossed the street out­side her Belt­line of­fice on a marked cross­walk at the in­ter­sec­tion of 10th Av­enue and 5th Street S.W.

She had the right of way and was three me­tres from the north curb when she was hit by a van turn­ing on a green light.

Rushed to hospi­tal in crit­i­cal con­di­tion, she died from her in­juries a few hours later.

In­stead of spend­ing the weekend an­tique shop­ping with his fam­ily in Nan­ton as planned, her hus­band Derek Pauletto spent the Fam­ily Day weekend mak­ing fu­neral ar­range­ments for his wife of 14 years.

Pauletto, 39, was cre­mated on Sun­day and her griev­ing fam­ily has de­cided her ashes will ac­com­pany them on fu­ture fam­ily va­ca­tions.

“I told the kids we could get 50 or 60 or 100 tiny bot­tles and put Mommy’s ashes in each one. Then ev­ery time we go on hol­i­days, we can bring one with us and find a lit­tle spot and Mom will al­ways be with us ev­ery time we’re on hol­i­days,” an emo­tional Derek Pauletto told the Herald.

Since the Paulet­tos’ first kiss, un­der a starry and bat-filled night sky on a May long weekend camp­ing trip in 1993, the duo was in­sep­a­ra­ble.

“She was blond-haired and blueeyed. She smiled a lot. She took care of me. She kept me re­ally grounded,” her hus­band said.

Af­ter mar­ry­ing in 1999, the cou­ple’s life to­gether was filled with both ad­ven­ture and the mun­dane. There was a fixer-up­per house, a mem­o­rable trip to Africa, count­less nights spent laugh­ing un­con­trol­lably while ly­ing in bed, a fam­ily trip to Dis­ney World last Fe­bru­ary and a 3,000-kilo­me­tre mo­tor­cy­cle trip from New Or­leans to Day­tona where the cou­ple woke up early to sit on the beach and watch the sun­rise.

“We were that cou­ple,” Pauletto said.

When the pair wel­comed Mady into the world 11 years ago, his wife thrived in her role as mom.

“Shelly had so much com­pas­sion, so much pa­tience,” he said. “She made me bet­ter. She calmed me down. Lis­ten­ing to how she would do stuff, I would re­flect and go ‘this is how you par­ent.’ ”

When he was selected to rep­re­sent Canada at a mo­tor­cy­cle gath­er­ing in Stur­gis, S.D., in 2007, it was his wife who in­sisted the en­tire fam­ily go.

The cou­ple drove 17 hours in a truck with a two-year-old, a fouryear-old and a mo­tor­cy­cle, to stay in a camp­ground full of bik­ers for 10 days.

Shelly Pauletto also vol­un­teered at her chil­dren’s school, was on the par­ent coun­cil and sup­ported her off­spring in their var­i­ous af­ter­school ac­tiv­i­ties.

“Mady does six dif­fer­ent dance classes a week and this is her first year in com­pe­ti­tion. Shelly isn’t go­ing to get to see that,” he said.

Chad Hughes, pres­i­dent and CEO of LandSo­lu­tions, said em­ploy­ees are dev­as­tated by her death.

“We’re just ral­ly­ing to­gether and be­hind her fam­ily to sup­port them,” he said Sun­day.

Her griev­ing hus­band is urg­ing Cal­gar­i­ans to slow down and pay at­ten­tion when be­hind the wheel.

“I used to be the guy that tried to rush all the time.... But when I just started to calm down and just drive the speed limit, go with the flow, I may have got to work 30 sec­onds later,” he said.

“We’re in these big huge wreck­ing ma­chines and our bod­ies are re­ally frag­ile.... Just try not to be so much in a hurry.”

Po­lice are con­tin­u­ing to in­vesti- gate the fa­tal col­li­sion. No charges have been laid.

 ?? Spin­drift Pho­tog­ra­phy ?? The Pauletto fam­ily is griev­ing the loss of their wife and mother, Shelly Pauletto, who was killed Thurs­day while cross­ing the street out­side her Belt­line of­fice.
Spin­drift Pho­tog­ra­phy The Pauletto fam­ily is griev­ing the loss of their wife and mother, Shelly Pauletto, who was killed Thurs­day while cross­ing the street out­side her Belt­line of­fice.

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