No there isn't. A reset through iTunes will put everything back to factory settings.
If you have access to her iTunes you may be able to extract the pics from a saved back up. Would require her Apple Id and password.
JWB, I hope you find a solution to your problem. I know that the photos there are the last treasure left back by your aunt. I'd start by going through her papers to see if by chance she wrote her password somewhere. Good luck and let us know how you make out. If I run into any other possible solutions, I will post them here.