Mother and Daughter Die Tragically After Their Car Accidentally Plunges Over California Cliff
The tragedy happened on Saturday around 11 a.m. at the Bodega Head Trail, a scenic overlook along the coast, the Sonoma County Sheriff's Office reported.
A mother and daughter were killed when the car they were in careened off a steep coastal cliff in Northern California and plunged 30 feet down, authorities said.
Elizabeth Correia, 41, and her mother, 64-year-old Maria Teixeira, were both pronounced dead. The tragedy happened on Saturday around 11 a.m. at the Bodega Head Trail, a scenic overlook along the coast, the Sonoma County Sheriff's Office reported.
It is unknown how the car drove off the cliff, according to the Bodega Bay Fire Protection District, the Mercury News reported.
According to the California Highway Patrol (CHP), when the silver Toyota RAV4 driven by Teixeira entered the parking lot, it continued to drive west and did not slow down or stop. Authorities said even when the car hit a log barrier at the edge of the cliff, it continued before it plummeted over the cliff.
Witnesses told the CHP that the vehicle did not appear to be speeding, the Mercury News reported.
Correia taught first-grade at the Lydikesen Elementary school for the past sixteen years and was "loved" by the children and the staff. Teixeira was the lead custodian at Montevideo Elementary school and was remembered as a wonderful person who left an impact on the community she served.
Both women lived in Dublin, Calif., People magazine reported.
Tim Correia shared the news regarding the tragic passing of his mother and sister.
”It's with a heavy heart that I share my mom, Maria Teixeira and my sister, Elizabeth Correia, both passed away yesterday after being involved in a single-car crash in Bodega Bay," Correia wrote. "There is a hole in my heart that will never be filled now. I'm so grateful for them and the time we shared. They will forever be part of me. I love you mom and sis.”
Tracie Culpepper, a first-grade teacher at Lydiksen, told the Mercury News that Correia was “compassionate, dedicated, and a natural when it came to teaching,” and that they both had classrooms next door to each other, ate lunch every day together and began teaching at the school the same time.
“She was my person, and I was hers. … I don’t know what I’m going to do without her,” she said, her voice breaking.
Montevideo Elementary School Principal Katie Witt sent a letter to the community Monday, stating the death of Teixeira, known as “Mrs. Maria,” has impacted them all, the Mercury News reported.
“For years, Mrs. Maria was a fixture in our community,” Witt said. “The kids loved her kind smile and reassuring presence. She will be greatly missed.”
CHP said an autopsy by the Sonoma County Coroner’s Office will determine whether there were any medical factors that may have contributed to the crash. The car will also be checked for any malfunctions.
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