Former coworker of standoff suspect's wife describes ordeal - - The News for South Mississippi

Former coworker of standoff suspect's wife describes ordeal

Eddie Bonafe. Eddie Bonafe.

A Baystate Medical Center valet parking employee was just twenty feet from Baystate standoff suspect Eddie Bonafe's car as he pulled into the Emergency Room Tuesday night.

Not only was he right there at the scene, but he also knew Bonafe's wife, who he says always seemed happy.

Pavel Chumak worked with her for more than a year at Wingate.

She was a CNA and he worked in the kitchen. He said he didn't know her husband well, but when he saw the red Fiat pull in, he knew something was wrong.

"He was just, jealous the jealous type," Chumak said. 

Chumak was the only valet driver working Tuesday night when he saw the Bonafe's car pull into the ER, a car he had seen often when he worked with Bonafe's wife for a year and a half.

"When he was parked over there and wasn't getting out of his car I started to get a little uncomfortable because that doesn't happen normally," Chumak said. 

Typically cars pull in, grab a wheelchair for their passenger, hand the keys to valet and run inside.

On Tuesday night, Bonafe stayed put inside his car.

"But when the gun came out it was really just shocking. I wouldn't say it was scary, it was just unexpected you know?" Chumak said. 

Chumak was frozen in his tracks.

"I kinda just stood there and stared at him, and when the cop yelled at us we just ran in," he said. 

Eventually Bonafe's wife was taken inside the hospital. Chumak says he didn't see much blood, but that she seemed confused.

"She thought she was in a car accident, that's what she told everyone, she could walk," he said. 

Chumak waited inside the hospital until 2 a.m. with patients, their family members and hospital staff until the standoff ended with Bonafe taking his own life.

Chumak will return to work on Thursday.

He plans to visit Bonafe's wife with old colleagues as soon as he can, and says he's happy she is doing well.

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