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When the engine of her Honda started overheating, a woman and her two grandchildren pulled over to the side of a California freeway. That’s when the woman asked her daughter to her husband and the father of the two children. Eager to help his two children and his beloved mother-in-law, the man set out to go get them. But when he arrived at the scene of their overheated car, he found his two children and the woman dead. And hi wife, who was there at the scene too, was left in critical condition.
Maria Briseno and her mother, 58-year-old Maria Rodriguez didn’t get too frustrated when the car overheated. It was a hot California summer day and these kinds of things happen.
After calling her husband to come help, a Good Samaritan stopped on the highway and started offering his expertise. But then a suspected drunk driver came out of nowhere in a white Nissan and slammed into the disabled car.
The drunk driver killed the two 12-year-old children in the backseat, Ailyn Miguel and Isaac Briseno. Their grandmother also died as well as the good Samaritan.
The children’s mother, Briseno, survived. But she was severely injured and was transported to the hospital.
“You can’t put into words. She’s not stable,” relative Rocio Ramirez told ABCNews. “It’s something that I think is going to take a long time for her to cope with it. It’s tough, she lost both of her kids and her mom.”
60-year-old Jose Prieto, the Good Samaritan, also lost his life. And Prieto’s family said it was just like him to offer help to a stranger in need.
“That’s just like him. He sees a car pulled over, dead in the street, he goes and he helps,” Prieto’s daughter, Monica, told CBSLA.
Police suspect 64-year-old Luis Sanchez was the drunk driver who murdered the four people. He was transported to the hospital after the crash.
Police are keeping an eye on Sanchez until the results of the toxicology tests come in. Despite being in custody, Sanchez is not cooperating. He refuses to speak to police.
Police found beer cans inside Sanchez’s Nissan Frontier.
“I see these accidents happen all the time and for it to happen to one of our family? I was just like no. It’s not true,” said cousin Melissa Arroyo.
A donation page was created to collect money for the family’s funeral costs. Loved ones and strangers alike are giving to the cause.
“Breaks my heart and I’m happy to see everyone supporting,” said Jackie Murillo.
“[It happened] on a freeway that I use all the time, it could happen to any of us,” said Donna Monjaraz.
Monica Prieto took the loss very hard. She hadn’t gotten along with her dad for a while when he died.
“It bothers me very much because I didn’t even get to say I love him. I didn’t get to tell him I’m sorry for not being a good daughter,” she said.
“A lot of people are hurt right now, but I guess it’s nice to see that people are willing to come out and help,” said Ramiro Briseno, uncle of the two kids who were killed.
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