My last hug from Tony was the night before he died. I will always feel that hug,that powerful hug
Tony and a friend came into Valle's where I was working to say Hi and to give me a hug. It was Halloween night, and it was one of the very few times that I was dressed for it. I remember his smirk as he saw his Mom looking like a weird witch. I don't recall if he had ever seen me dressed for Halloween before. He was just checking in with me, as he often did, neither of us knowing that it would be his last visit with me. His younger brother James was also waiting tables there that night.
At that time Tony had lost a third tooth from a fight. He had beautiful teeth and he looked so strange without it. He was planning to get a new tooth to go along with his two other missing teeth.
He loved to tease me by popping his partial in and out because it made me laugh.
I really know how much Tony loves me. I know he never would have started using heroin if he knew it would take him from me. Heroin was someting Tony thought he had control over. But he was wrong, Heroin had the control and in the end he lost.
My last converation with Tony was about this waiter at work that used to give me a hard time and Tony did not like it. He was concerned for me and wanted to take care of this guy. Tony knew how much I hated violence, I told him no way, he was not worth getting into trouble over. But, it did not stop him from giving this guy a threatening look that meant, "Don't mess with my Mom or I'll mess with you". He laughed at my reaction to that, I told him not to worry. Tony was very protective of me and his sister and two brothers. No one hurts his family if he could help it.
Tony hugged me goodbye for one last time, I never should have let him go... He gave such good powerful hugs. I miss him so much.
I told him to be careful as he flashed me a smile when he walked out the door, out of my life.
"NOVEMBER 1, 1997."
I was at work again Saturday, I had no idea what was happening to Tony as I laughed and talked to people. I'm his Mom, how could I have not sensed that something was wrong. I mean, I always worried about Tony, afraid of what his life style would lead him. And I feel I should have known he needed me while his life was draining from him, while his smile was slowly fading away. How could I have gone on breathing while he was no longer.
Medcu was not called until 11:00am, but I was not told until 4:00 that afternoon. How is this possible, I was never anywhere but home or work. How could Tony be dead and no one informing me. I am his Mom and I should have been the first told, I should have been with him. His father knew how to find me, but he did not have the courage to tell me. No, I don't feel that I am being too bitter about him. He was with Tony Halloween night when he shot himself up with that poison. He left him there knowing how much he took. He called there at 9:00 in the morning he said and thought he sensed something was wrong after talking to Bruce Balboni. But he waited until 11:00am to drop by to see Tony. And when he saw Medcu in front of the building he did not even stop. He waited until later. And when he did finally stop he lied to everyone. Both Anthony and Bruce Balboni lied to everyone about Tony's death.
Did he bother to tell the police where to find me, NO. Instead he went by his sisters hours later and told her. When she asked him if he was going to Valle's to tell me, he said "no the police will find her". No matter what my feelings where toward my ex-husband, I would have wanted to be told by him. His sister called me at Valle's; by then it was after 4:00pm.
This is a conversation I will never forget, it changed my life forever.
Terri called me to check up on me, she was worried and did not know if I had heard about Tony. She was surprised to find me at work, she was sure that I had already been notified by now after all I was his Mother. I was surprised to hear from her and sensed that something was wrong, I could feel the panic rising inside of me. "Please tell me what's wrong." She didn't want to be the one to tell me but I needed to know. "Tony died". I remember saying no, I remember hanging up on her. Why would she lie to me like this? I had just seen Tony last night, I could still smell him and feel his hug. I wouldn't believe her,
I did not know what to do.
I remmember going into the office, the assistant manager, was there.I tried to tell him what she had said and that I did not know what to do. I tried finding her number to call her back. By now everything is starting to blur for me, it's like I'm in some nightmare and I can't wake up. I remember Sue coming in the office to say Terri had called back, it was true.
"My Tony was dead"
I remember trying to call the hospitals to find out where he was and what happen. I still did not believe this, I had to see my Tony. How could some say he was dead and expect me to believe it whithout seeing him. I wanted to find out that she was wrong. My son James was working with me that day, and someone went to get him. I remember crying and hugging him and telling him the lie I was just told. He paged his father to see what he could find out. His father called him back. Yes, it was true. My "Tony was dead"! He was really dead. I wanted to stop breathing right there on the spot. Anthony told James that Tony was at Hay and Peabody. I called them, wanting them to tell me it was not true. I needed them to tell me that this was some kind of a cruel joke. They said it was not. I need to see my Tony. Someone there told me I could not and to call Detective Young at the Portland Police. I called him, he said Tony died of an apparent overdose, and that he had to be taken to Augusta for an autopsy. I told him I needed to see him, that I did not believe this to be true. He said he was sorry,
but he knew Tony and had identified his body.
After that I can't remember everything. I do know that I was sitting on the floor and people kept floating in and out around. I know James was hugging me. I know someone took us home. I could not understand why I could not see Tony, why I could not hug him. He needed me, why was this happening? People were calling me to find out if it ws true and to say how sorry they were. I just wanted everyone and everything to disappear. I needed to wake up to find this not to be true. What am I going to do, I was just hugging Tony less than 24hrs. earlier, I don't understand...
Bruce Balboni called, he said he was sorry, he was crying. I now feel like such a fool, I told him he should come over. That he should not be alone, I thought he cared about Tony. Had I known the truth about his part in Tony's death I would have killed him with my bare hands. I let him into my home, how could he have lied to me. Everything he had told me I would find out days later , was a lie. Bruce Balboni and Anthony could not get their stories straight. They were both there when he took his overdose and they both were hiding something. I need the truth, and someday I had better get it. They are both cowards,
how can they live with their lies...
Liz was at Bentley College with her friends celebrating her friend's birthday.How am I going to tell her that her brother Tony was dead. I knew she would jump in her car and drive back. I was too scared to call her. I'll always regret that I was unable to drive there and tell her in person. I called her friend Regina and told her what happened and that I needed her helped in getting Liz back to Maine I could not risk Liz driving back in the condition she was in, and I really needed my daughter with me.
When Liz got there the three of us hugged and cried and tried to comfort each other. I tried to figure out how this could have happen, how could I have prevented this from happening to Tony?
Everything over the next few days blur together to me. I don't know when or how things happened I just know they did.
I went to Hay and Peabody with my daughter, Liz; my son James; their stepmom, Lisa and Tony's girlfriend. We made all the arrangements. I wanted to do nothing at first, something private for just myself and two other children. But I slowly realized that my other children needed to be around people. Somehow we managed to have a beautiful memorial for my Tony. Over 200 people were there, I was pleased to see the people from Tony's life come, past and present. I was still not allowed to see Tony until he came back from an autopsy in Augusta on Wednesday. Since Tony died an unattended death at someone's residence an autopsy was ordered. I went from Saturday until Wednesday before I was able to see for sure that it was my Tony. I talked many times to Dec. Young, he knew Tony for many years and he cared about him. I have no problems with how he handled Tony's case. He was frusterated too and wanted to get to the truth. We know the truth but proving it was another story.
There are so many lies and unanswered questions concerning Tony's death, his murder...
I'll tell you about some lies that were told. If you read the newspaper story below this one you will already know about who lied. His father and Bruce the two that were with Tony his last hours of life.
I have so many unanswered questions. They could have saved Tony's life had they not been so selfish. I truly don't know how they can live with themselves. They can't face me because they know I know there is more to be told. I'm Tony's Mother I should be told the truth.
I know after Tony left me he went to Bruce Balboni's apartment, Bruce and his father were there. Sometime during the evening Tony and Bruce injected heroin into their bodies. At some point Tony took more, knowing that when he did he sometimes went into a coma like sleep. Bruce and Anthony both knew Tony's body could not handle that much heroin...Later that evening Tony took the lethal dose of methadone. Anyone who uses knows that the two together are deadly. Where did he get it? Well Bruce Balboni himself admitted that he belonged to the Methadone clinic, and I know he is one of many who sells some of his supply. Perhaps they could not have stopped him from taking it. But they could have watched him, instead they went about doing whatever it was they were doing together. Leaving Tony to die all alone.
According to the police report Bruce said he awoke around 11:00 and noticed Tony looking bluish and not moving. Did he forget that he spoke with Tony's father Anthony at 9:00am. Anthony himself said he thought he had sensed something was wrong. After knowing his son had taken an overdose the night before why did he wait another two hours before going to see him. Why didn't he call me to let me know what was going on and that Tony might be in trouble? Why when he went to Bruce Balboni's house around 11:00 he saw Medcu and then left without finding out if anything was wrong with Tony? Why???? Instead he waited until a few hours later to see what had happened. Why??? Meanwhile Bruce is spinning his own lies to cover his butt.
In the report he told the police Tony was dressed except for not having a shirt on. Bruce said he had heard if someone was in this condition you should put them in a tub of cold water. I would think that if you were trying to save someone's life you would not take the time to strip them totally naked. He called 911 and when Medcu arrived minutes later they found Tony lying nude on the floor in between the kitchen and bathroom. Why did Bruce have to take his clothes off like he was nothing. Why did he have to let him die and then take away his dignity?
I know this is a way of trying to save someone's life but Bruce knew you were dead at least two hours before he decided to call 911 and fake at trying to save you...