The four victims killed when they were hit by the same car Tuesday night in Escondido were members of the same family and were out on their regular evening walk.
It was about 8:30 p.m. when Carmela Camacho, 50, her partner Abel Valdez, 33, and Camacho's two grandchildren, 10-year-old Yovanny Felix and 11-year-old Emmanuel Rivas were struck on San Pasqual Valley Road.
The group of four were about a minute's walk from their home.
The mother of the children and daughter to Camacho, Norma Espinoza, said the family takes the same walk nearly every evening, but this time they never made it home.
“They took my kids, my mother,” she said.
Espinoza was getting out of work and saw a crowd at the scene. She never imagined her family was the part of the commotion.
“I got back home and realized my grandmother was worried,” Espinoza said.
She went back to the scene when she realized her family was not home from their walk.
“As I got closer and closer they informed me four pedestrians were hit by a car,” she said. “Immediately it came to my mind it was my mom and my kids and her partner.”
The four were walking northbound on San Pasqual when they were hit from behind. Two died at the scene, and two died at a nearby hospital, according to the Escondido Police Department.
“They rushed me to the ER to see if it was my child or my mother but when I got there they were deceased. They were gone,” Espinoza said.
As she shared the horrific revelation with NBC 7, she also showed off some of her kids’ favorite toys and some of their works of art.
“It was for me for my kids to bury me, not me to bury them,” she said.
Before the tragedy the family had plans to buy flowers Wednesday and take them to the cemetery where other loved ones are buried.
EPD is still investigating the crash, and investigators say it doesn’t appear the 28-year-old Escondido woman who was behind the wheel was under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Investigators are still trying to determine if speed or distraction were factors in the crash.
The woman has not been arrested, according to EPD.