The daughter of a landscaper who plummeted 50 feet to his death while trimming trees in La Jolla wants her father to be remembered for the passion that he put into work and his family.
Noe Valle, 39, was tending to a palm tree on Neptune Place between Kolmar Street and Gravilla Street when he fell just after 11 a.m. on Sunday, the San Diego Police Department said.
His daughter, Vanessa, said she had plans with her father that evening but now can only remember the moment she found out her father would not be coming home.
"My heart broke into two right away," she told NBC 7 in an exclusive interview on Tuesday. "It was just a shock. I couldn't even believe that my dad had passed away; it was so unexpected."
She said it was not unusual for her father to be working on the weekends. He held two different jobs and typically worked long hours seven days a week but it was something that he enjoyed.
"I saw that in his eyes, that he just felt such an incredible love for everything that he did and I know he wouldn't have wanted his death to be any other way," Vanessa Valle said.
Despite Noe Valle's passion for his job, Vanessa Valle wants people to remember him as more than just a worker. To her, he was a dedicated father.
"My dad was so much more than just a worker," she said. "He was the most kind, loving, caring and courageous man and he loved his family and he loved his clients and he loved everything he did."
Two off-duty nurses who were driving by when Noe Valle fell stopped to help but despite life-saving measures, he was pronounced dead at the scene, SDPD Acting Sgt. Brandon Broaddus said.
Valle worked for Carlos Buch and was with a co-worker from at the time of his fall.
Cal OSHA is conducting an investigation and would determine if there were any workplace violations at the time of Valle's death.