ESCONDIDO — North County is grieving and fundraising after an Escondido mother of two died following a car crash in mid-March.
Adriana Garcia, the mother of a 23-year-old man and a 10-year-old girl, died after a car crash that put her into a coma. Her daughter, Avelina, was also in the crash but will make a full recovery, said Garcia’s friend, Megan Myers.
“I was in disbelief,” said Myers, who launched a GoFundMe campaign to help Garcia’s family pay for funeral expenses. “I still am. How can the brightest soul in the world be taken from us so soon?”
Myers, who met Garcia while working at beauty store Ulta in Escondido years ago, said the duo quickly became good friends. Garcia was a cosmetologist who specialized in weddings. A San Diego native, Garcia moved to North County in recent years, Myers said.
“She was one of the most beautiful souls to walk this earth and one of the raddest individuals you’ll ever meet,” Myers said of her late friend. “She was the rock in everyone’s life and an amazing mom to her two children.”
Myers said Garcia’s daughter will now be living with her father, but the transition will be difficult for the young girl.
“Adriana was the light of her daughter’s life,” Myers said. “She and Avelina were best friends. Those two adored each other and everyone knew. It was the sweetest thing you could ever see.”
But more than just a great mother, Garcia was also a great friend, loved ones said.
“She was beautiful, but not like those girls in the magazines,” Macy Ornellia said. “She was beautiful for the way she thought. She was beautiful for the sparkle in her eyes when she talked about something she loved. She was beautiful for her ability to make other people smile even if she was sad.”
Amanda McLaughlin described Garcia as “wholeheartedly optimistic.”
“She always made everything fun and was so easy to be around,” McLaughlin said. “Her impact on everyone’s lives is so much more than she will ever know but I do know we are all better for having known her.”
Another close friend, Miranda Barker, described Garcia as “amazing.”
“Her spirit and her heart radiated light that could brighten anybody’s day,” Barker said. “Her smile made you smile and when you looked into her eyes you can tell that she really saw you.”
Myers and other friends said they hope to fundraise at least $20,000 for Garcia’s family to cover expenses associated with her friend’s death. Any additional expenses will go to her children.
“When someone passes you forget that they have a funeral to fund,” Myers said. “Her children need support still. I want her son to feel financially safe and supported in this time of need.”
But, the Garcia family will need the public’s support to reach the fundraising goal of $20,000, Myers said. By the end of March, the campaign had received more than $10,000 in donations from more than 200 people, ranging from friends and coworkers to staff members from Avelina’s school in San Marcos.
“Finances are the last thing I want her family to be concerned about,” Myers said. “They should be able to process and grieve the passing of a loved one and give attention to one another in this time of need. I wanted to lift a burden off of their shoulders. I hope that this puts them at ease and makes them feel as if they can celebrate Adriana in a way she deserves without anything holding them back. ”
For more information or to make a donation to the GoFundMe campaign, go to gf.me/u/xspxqx.