FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) --Heartbroken and torn the boyfriend of a 22-year-old Caruthers woman killed in a car crash speaks out about the accident that claimed his lovers life.
Alvaro Mendez said his girlfriend was driving down Mountain View Avenue near Walnut Avenue to get on the freeway to head to the Chick-Fil-A at Fashion Fair-- that's where she worked for almost a year. He said it was late that night, after receiving a call from her father telling him she never made it and was gone.
Mendez is grappling with a new reality-- trying to figure out how life will go on without his true love of three years, who, Monday night, was killed in a car accident. "I feel so lost without her."
Sandra Gallardo was driving down Mountain View Avenue when, according to CHP, a 17-year-old driver crossed into oncoming traffic, hitting Gallardo's vehicle head-on. An impact that killed her just two days after her birthday.
"On Saturday was her birthday, she turned 22 and all of her gifts contained nothing but Minions. Her cake was Minions, everything-- and she love it. She cried and was so happy about that just-- I wish I could go back to that day and spend some more time with her," said Mendez.
Mendez said his girlfriend was enrolled at Clovis Community College, taking classes to become a surgeon. Her favorite color was pink. A color he would put to the test when trying to plan their future together. "I would make jokes about how I'm going to wear an orange tux to the wedding because orange is my favorite color. She would get mad but I was just messing around."
And now instead of planning their walk down the aisle, Mendez is preparing to say his final goodbye. "I always told her there's things, I know what to say at our wedding but those things will be said at her funeral now."
But before that day comes, in case she's looking down and watching, he has one last thing to say to his greatest love of all. "Sandra, I love you. You will forever be in my heart."
Mendez and Sandra's friends are planning a candlelight vigil Wednesday at the Caruthers Fairgrounds at 6:00 p.m. They will be collecting donations in pink jars, Sandra's favorite color, to help with funeral arrangements.
Also, officials at Clovis Community College said grief counseling will be available Wednesday on campus for anyone who needs someone to talk to.
Gallardo's family has set up a GoFundMe page to help with funeral expenses. If you would like to donate, click here.