Dad Killed in Crash on Son's Birthday

Belarmino Santos was struck by a wrong-way driver, police said.

Belarmino Santos was driving home from work at Southport Superior Plating early Friday morning when his 2006 Nissan Altima collided with a Mercedes traveling the wrong way on Route 8 in Seymour.

Santos, 37, of Waterbury, died at the scene at 3:35 a.m. He would never get the chance to wish his son a happy fifth birthday.

Santos, known to his friends as Mino, was driving northbound on Route 8 when his car collided with a 2007 Mercedes driven by Zakei Barnes, 34, of Waterbury, near exit 22, police said. Barnes had been driving southbound on the northbound side of the road, police said.

Barnes was taken to Waterbury Hospital for non-life-threatening injuries, police said.

A friend of Santos said Belarmino was a great husband, father and friend. 

"He wasn't doing anything wrong. (He) was just on his way home from work. It shocked all of us. Even when they told me, I didn't want to believe it. I still don't believe it. It's a big tragedy," Fernando Azancoth said.

State police told the Greenwich Time earlier that the crash might be connected with an erratic driver who earlier hit several cars in Naugatuck.

The section of Route 8 was shutdown through much of the morning commute.
State police are investigating. No charges have been filed.

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