Heather Garcia, a mother of five from Los Angeles, died after falling from a party bus and being struck by another moving vehicle on the 101 Freeway, authorities said.
Mother of five dies after falling off bus a day before her birthday
The 29-year-old mother was celebrating her niece’s birthday and her upcoming birthday on the party bus when she fell, early Sunday morning. She would have turned 30 on Monday.
California Highway Patrol officers pronounced her dead at the scene of the crash after they responded to the report.
Garcia, the mother of children ages 1 to 10, was dancing on the party bus when she tripped and fell against the bus door, her brother told CBS Los Angeles. He said no one knows how the door opened and she fell.
Investigators said she was hit by another vehicle when she fell and died instantly.
Garcia’s husband, Army veteran Rafael Corral, is now raising funds through GoFundMe to “give her the burial she deserves,” as he was not prepared for the sudden loss.
He described her as “the life of the party” and a woman with a “huge heart” who always lent her support to anyone in need.
“We had so many plans and now I am left with so many questions and an extremely broken heart. Our children will never see their mother again and I don’t know how I will go on but I know she will always be with us,” he added.
He told reporters that he has seen “some horrible, crazy things in Iraq” and that seeing it happen to “your family…it shouldn’t have happened.”
“When you pay for a service not to drink and drive, not to do anything illegal, you expect … to come back, that someone will bring you back safe, and that you’re going to come home safe because that’s what you paid for a service for,” he added.
The incident remains under investigation. Police said the driver of the vehicle that hit Garcia remained at the scene and cooperated with the investigation.