By Ken MacLeod

WEST BROOKFIELD (CBS) – Police say a Central Mass. woman who was drunk behind the wheel is to blame for killing another driver. The impact was so hard, the elderly victim’s car shot off the road and into a parking lot.

It was just before noon and 78-year-old Alex Cordy was coming from the post office when he stopped at an intersection where police say he was broadsided by 54-year-old Cindy Bliss who was allegedly speeding and drunk.

bliss2 Police: Woman Driving Drunk Caused Fatal West Brookfield Crash

Cindy Bliss (WBZ-TV)

As Bliss was arraigned Tuesday, prosecutors indicated it was her second drunk driving arrest since 2015. And when she was pried from her overturned car Monday, rescuers say she reeked of booze. Investigators say she had a bottle of vodka with her.

Cordy is a longtime parishioner and finance chairman at Our Lady of the Sacred Heart.“We really need more like him if we can find them,” said Fr. Chester Misiewicz.

The accident happened right in front of the church. “We’re really struggling now, some of the people we’ve talked to are really devastated by the news,” said Fr. Misiewicz. “It happened so suddenly and so unexpectedly.”

Wally Connor had known Alex and his wife for years. He says Cordy founded the local Knights of Columbus chapter and was a tireless charity fundraiser.

cordy Police: Woman Driving Drunk Caused Fatal West Brookfield Crash

Alex Cordy (WBZ-TV)

“Alex was the best of the best,” Connor said. “He never said a bad word about anyone, you never saw him mad.”

The suspect’s husband, Kenneth Bliss, said he didn’t believe his wife was drunk, insisting she’s had seizures since she was a teen and suffered from exhaustion of late.

“The media is blowing this all out of proportion, which I don’t like,” Kenneth Bliss said. “She’s a harmless girl, nice to everybody.”

He said his heart goes out to the victim’s family but his wife is no demon.

Cindy Bliss remained in jail Tuesday night, unable to pay $20,000 cash bail. But even if she makes it, the judge has ordered house arrest and a GPS bracelet.

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