By Madisen Keavy

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — The pedestrian killed while walking during school pick up at Phoebe Hearst Elementary School in East Sacramento on Thursday was a Mother at the school, according to parents and friends that dropped flowers off at a memorial in front of the school.

On Friday, the Sacramento County Coroner’s Office identified the woman as Guadalupe Jimenez.

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She was killed in a two-vehicle accident on 60th Ave. and Folsom Blvd. around 1:30 p.m., according to Sacramento Police.

A spokesperson for the department confirmed that when SPD officers arrived to the scene they recruited help from bystanders to lift the vehicle off of the pedestrian parent.

A former coworker told CBS13 she had two children at Phoebe Hearst Elementary and the area around the school is familiar, because it’s located near her office at Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD). He said oftentimes SMUD employees walk Folsom Blvd. to get to local restaurants for lunch.

“She was a great friend to everybody, incredible worker, incredible person, just an amazing person,” said Jim Parks, who brought flowers to the memorial on Friday.

He said she could do the work of two people, but was also “a light” in the room. Her personality, he said, showed during holidays like Halloween where he remembers she would dress up, “more than most.”

Parks retired from SMUD and said it was Jimenez who planned his retirement party over Zoom. Even in the pandemic, he said, she made it special.

“Just a real outgoing, fun person to be with, but yet, she did the work of two people–maybe more. It was fun she could fun and a high performer at the same time,” said Parks.

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Another coworker, who asked not to be named, brought flowers to the memorial site during a run. She stopped to tell CBS13 how she remembers her friend.

“Energetic, full of life… she had a great sauciness about her, to be honest with you, she was really great,” she said.

As the sun set on Friday night, friends and loved ones gathered near Phoebe Hearst Elementary for a candlelight vigil in Jimenez’s honor. Many brought flowers to add to the memorial.

A SMUD spokesperson shared a statement with CBS13:

“Yesterday, we lost a beloved member of the SMUD family. As we mourn the tragic passing of a great mom, friend and colleague, we will always remember the lasting impact of her important work in energy innovation.We extend our deepest condolences to her loved ones and are keeping them in our thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.” 

The Sacramento City Unified School District sent a message to district families to inform them of the accident and share details of the services available to the school community.

Those measures, outlined below, are expected to be in place as students and staff need them. There were also links to grief resources for parents and staff to share with students because “many children and adults witnesses this incident,” according to the SCUSD letter.

  • An informational staff meeting to provide a space to express feelings related to the accident, provide staff with resources for themselves and students, and to identify immediate staff and/or students in need of support
  • Classroom interventions as needed to support teachers leading conversations with students
  • Setup of a Wellness Center for students, staff and caregivers needing individual support
  • A crisis response staff meeting to check in on staff and plan for future supports

SCUSD Superintendent Jorge Aguilar shares his condolences:

“We take the safety of our students and families to heart. A tragic accident such as this should give everyone pause to realize the roads around our schools need to be treated with extreme care. We extend our deepest sympathies to our impacted families and we are extending them our full support during this time.”

School Board Member Leticia Garcia added a statement:

“Like you, I am devastated that we lost a member of the Phoebe family in a pedestrian accident. Parent pickup is often a joyous time as families reunite after a day of school, and it’s easy to forget the dangers of high speed traffic. I’m committed to work with city officials to thoroughly investigate this accident-and improve street safety. We are grateful to those present who quickly responded to help a fellow parent in their time of need.”

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On Facebook, Sacramento City councilmember Katie Valenzuela shared a statement:

“Last night I received a call informing me of the shocking and tragic accident that resulted in a woman’s death near Phoebe Hearst Elementary. My heart goes out to the family and friends of the victim. My office is following up with the school today, and organizing a meeting with the community, city traffic officials, and PD to ensure we are doing absolutely everything we can to prevent this kind of accident from occurring again in the future. Please be careful and pay attention to your surroundings while driving, especially in school zones. Caution and awareness save lives.”