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Marathon man sentenced in fatal crash

Bob Ellis/staff photographer

Christopher Tanner, of Marathon, is escorted Tuesday into Cortland County Court.

CORTLAND — Tuesday was the 626th day of pain for Michaeline Fletcher — 626 days since a Marathon man killed her mother in a drunken driving crash.

“My mother wasn’t just taken that day, she was taken every day from that day out.” said Fletcher, the daughter of Shanon L. Nasoni.

Nasoni, 49, was killed in July 11, 2015, when a 2012 Honda Accord traveling north, driven by Christopher Tanner, 43, of Marathon, crossed into the southbound lane and collided with her motorcycle.

Tanner had a blood-alcohol content of 0.21 percent, almost three times the legal limit, police said.
Nasoni’s mother, Gail Kolb-Michael, said during the sentencing she is determined to live to be a support system for the rest of her family. Kolb-Michael said she never had a final good-bye or a final “I love you” from Nasoni because of the accident.

Tanner had the chance not to drive the day of the crash but didn’t take it, said Jim Bukowski, Nasoni’s fiance.

At the time of the accident, Tanner was charged with aggravated vehicular homicide, first-degree vehicular manslaughter and second-degree manslaughter, felonies; aggravated driving while intoxicated, driving while intoxicated and reckless driving, misdemeanors; and failure to keep right, a violation.

On Jan. 31, Tanner accepted a deal and pleaded guilty to first-degree vehicular manslaughter, a felony.

Tanner appeared Tuesday afternoon in Cortland County Court with his attorney, Kevin Jones, in front of Judge William Ames, who sentenced him to three to nine years in prison.

“I did not harm your loved one intentionally,” Tanner said when given the chance to address the court.

The accident happened after Tanner blacked out and lost consciousness, he said.

Tanner told Nasoni’s family he sincerely hates himself for causing Nasoni’s death.

“Not a day passes that I don’t wish I could take her place,” Tanner said.

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