23-year-old Yesenia Aguilar was walking on the sidewalk in Anaheim, Los Angeles, holding hands with boyfriend James Alvarez on August 11. Investigators say they were hit by a woman driving under the influence of drugs.
Yesenia, who was eight months pregnant with little Adayln, was killed, and her unborn baby was left in critical condition. Miraculously, however, she’s making a recovery in hospital.
“It just happened so fast,” James said, as per Fox. “Hearing the screeching car lose control and then seeing the car go in our direction on the sidewalk. We closed our eyes and were ready for the impact. We were just bracing the impact and mine never came. We turned around and I saw everything, I saw my wife. I know she was thinking of our daughter. I know she was just, ‘our daughter, daughter.’”
Now, James has been able to do a photoshoot with his daughter, just as Yesenia had dreamed of.
“I hope people see her sweet little face and really think before they do something stupid and break families apart because this little girl didn’t deserve it and Yesenia didn’t deserve it,” photographer Grisel Leyva, who did the couple’s maternity photoshoot as well, said.
40-year-old Courtney Pandolfi, who was the driver of the vehicle that hit Yesenia, was out on bail on another pending DUI crash at the time of the accident. She’s been charged with murder.
“This woman had multiple chances to change and didn’t change and because of her actions, she took my wife away from me,” James said. “The hardest thing is that she’s going to grow up without her mom. She’ll never know the warmth of her mother. I just have to cherish this miracle in front of me every single day.”
James went on to explain how he felt down and alone after the tragic accident, but the love and support of the community has helped him rise to his feet.
Stories like this simply break my heart. A woman has lost her life in a needless tragedy, and all because of the completely irresponsible actions of another.
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