FRISCO, TX—For the first time, the family of Julia Zaman met the woman she died trying to help last year on the Dallas North Tollway.
In March of 2017, 46-year-old Julia Zaman was driving on the DNT near the Sam Rayburn Tollway when she noticed a black SUV had crashed into the median.
According to investigators, a pregnant woman wrecked while trying to avoid an accident.
Zaman pulled over on the shoulder and called 911, but when she got out of the car—another driver hit her and killed her.
Zaman’s husband, Nadeem, had been married to Julia for 22 years.
“She was the epitome of positivity, always positive, always optimistic,” Nadeem said in an interview with WFAA last year. “She didn’t see evil. She always saw good.”
Explaining Julia’s death to their 15-year-old autistic daughter was difficult, Zaman said last year.
“She is just comprehending now that her mother is no more. Again, that’s the part of the autism, comprehension, it grows with time. And the next three or four days it becomes more challenging.”
Losing a loved one is never easy. But on Saturday, Zaman and his family were able to put aside some of their hurt.
For the first time, he met Madeline Mcintire and her 10-month-old son Walter. They’re the ones Julia stopped to help on the DNT last year.
“I've had an internal battle of wanting to reach out, not knowing if they were going to be mad that I waited,” Mcintire said.
Mcintire first reached out to Zaman on Facebook this week by sending a message that he’s since shared publicly.
It reads, "I have contemplated if I would ever send this, but today is the day that I will.
Dear Nadeem, March 27th is a day that I will never forget. Every day when I take Dallas North Tollway I pass that spot. I am the women your wife saved. I was driving the Kia SUV. I was 9.5 months pregnant, stranded in the fast lane, lost my glasses and shoes on impact of hitting the median, couldn’t see, was bleeding and disoriented. Your wife was the only person who initially stopped to help me out of dozens of drivers who witnessed my accident. I saw your wife that night. I remember feeling helpless, terrified, and screaming but no words would come out. I did not know Julia, but there will never be another day in my life that I don’t wake up thanking her. Thanking her for her selfless act to pull over and call 911. Because of her, I received the help that I needed to make sure my son would be ok. There will never be the right words to express to you how deeply sorry I am for your loss, but I needed to tell you- I am sorry. Sincerely, M M”
Mcintire says meeting Zaman was long overdue.
“I needed you to know that I’m thankful and that I’m sorry—above all things I’m sorry,” she said to Zaman in his living room.
For Zaman, things have come full circle. He looks at Mcintire’s son Walter and smiles, knowing he’s alive today because of Julia.
“She’s going to live through him for a while,” he said.
Zaman says there will be a 5K held in Julia’s honor on March 31st at Hidden Cove Park. Proceeds will go to some of her favorite charities.
In August of last year, 19-year-old Rabyl Nathoo was indicted on a manslaughter charge in connection with Julia’s death.
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