Wow, we can’t even imagine…
The parents of five children were tragically killed after a redwood tree fell onto their car last week.
The freak accident happened on Thursday when Jessica Woodruff and Jake Woodruff were on a road trip for the momma’s 46th birthday. The couple was traveling southbound on Highway 199 near Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park in Del Norte County when a 175-foot-tall redwood from the east side of the road suddenly toppled onto the car — killing them instantly.
According to NBC News, the California Highway Patrol revealed the tree crushed the two’s 2016 Honda “passenger compartment” and split the trunk in half. The crash is still under investigation. It’s unclear what caused the massive tree to come down, especially since it was not windy that day. A spokesperson for the CHP office in Crescent City, Brandy Gonzalez told SFGate:
“This is a very forested area. We have trees everywhere. It’s in the middle of the redwoods. It’s just old-growth and we have no idea why the tree fell. It was Mother Nature.”
While falling trees do happen, Gonzalez added that the fatal event was extremely rare.
“The timing of everything was very, very unusual. I’ve been on the department for 19 years and I’ve been in this area 12 to 13 years and it’s very unusual. We’ve had trees fall down and cars make contact, but this kind of incident is very unusual.”
Jake and Jessica leave behind five children: Meghan, Evan, Casey, Allie, and Chelsea, the pair’s GoFundMe said. Amanda Maffei, who organized the fundraiser for her cousin’s kids, told KDRV-TV the couple had been married for nearly 13 years and their children range from 8 to 24 years old. The family member started the GoFundMe to help out the older ones who will share the responsibility of caring for their younger siblings.
“I think that they’re going to find strength within each other. They’re going to look out for each other and, you know, just the generosity of so many different communities and the support that they’ve received. I’m hoping that they find strength in that as well.”
As of Wednesday morning, the GoFundMe page has raised more than $254,100. The shocking news comes just a couple of days after 31-year-old TikTok star Rochelle Hager was also killed when a branch fell on her car as she was driving beneath it in Maine.
Just, no words… It’s truly unimaginable that something so tragic like this could happen. Our hearts go out to the five kids who are mourning the loss of their parents right now.
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