Bee may have distracted driver

Bee may have distracted driver

A Gilroy man who died in a crash near Quincy that seriously
injured four others was distracted by a bee just prior to the
accident, according to a California Highway Patrol report.
By Lori Stuenkel

Gilroy – A Gilroy man who died in a crash near Quincy that seriously injured four others was distracted by a bee just prior to the accident, according to a California Highway Patrol report.

Ron Dominguez, 41, was driving with fiancee Alyssa Calimpong, 34, and friends Mike Hubbard, 25, and Mark Fries, 41, all of Gilroy, eastbound on Highway 70 toward Reno about 12:20pm Friday. Dominguez was planning to surprise Calimpong with a wedding in Reno, and Hubbard was to be his best man.

Dominguez was driving his 1996 Ford Windstar about 55 miles per hour when a bee flew in his open window and struck him, according to the CHP.

“(Hubbard) recalls a bee hitting Dominguez on the chest, and it falling into his lap,” CHP Officer Kassandra DiMaggio said Tuesday.

Hubbard is the only passenger of the van or the vehicle it struck with any memory of the crash, she said.

Dominguez was distracted by the bee and allowed his van to drift into the westbound lane while on a curve, where it struck head-on a Jeep Cherokee, driven by Debra Ann Robinson, 48, of Greenville. According to DiMaggio, Hubbard was bending over to reach for a napkin to pick up the bee and did not witness Dominguez drifting.

“The physical evidence was found in the westbound lane, so he had to have drifted over the double yellows,” DiMaggio said.

Drugs and alcohol were ruled out as being a factor in the crash. An investigation is ongoing.

Dominguez, who worked with a brazing company in Fremont, died at the scene.

His three passengers and Robinson all remain at Enloe hospital in Chico. Hubbard had major injuries to both legs. He will remain at the hospital for physical therapy for an undetermined amount of time, according to his sister. Calimpong suffered major head and facial injuries. Fries suffered severe abdominal injuries.

Robinson was trapped behind the wheel of her vehicle and suffered massive leg and pelvic injuries.

Ron Dominguez and Calimpong have two sons, Keanu, 6, and Keoni, 5, and Dominguez also has a 14-year-old daughter, Kyana. The couple has been together for eight years, according to two of Dominguez’s eight siblings.

Andy Dominguez, 40, said his brother was responsible as a youngster, played Little League and had a love of lowrider cars. Ron Dominguez struggled later in life, but had been sober for five years.

“He was trying to get away from the life they used to be involved in,” Andy Dominguez said, adding that his brother was a mentor to Hubbard and Fries.

Lately, Ron Dominguez could be seen carrying around inspirational cards with devotional messages on them.

Susie Bush, Dominguez’s sister, said the family is doing “much better.”

A memorial service is scheduled for noon Saturday at the First Baptist Church of Prunedale, 17716 Pesante Road, Salinas.

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