CITRUS HEIGHTS, Calif. (KTXL) — A head-on crash in Citrus Heights last week left a father and his 6-year-old daughter with serious injuries.
The pair left their Orangevale home Thursday night to drop off supplies for an elderly relative, who is staying inside amid the coronavirus pandemic.
But shortly after making their deliveries, Cody and Ollie Jackson’s father-daughter time was interrupted by headlights.
“I was devastated and I didn’t know if they were dead or alive,” said Michele Jackson, Cody’s mother.
The Jacksons were only a few miles away from returning home when police say an SUV crossed over the center divider on Auburn Boulevard near Greenback Lane, hitting their truck head on.
investigators believe speeding was a factor in the crash.
First responders pronounced two people inside the SUV dead at the scene.
A growing memorial has been set up near the crash site to honor the two people who died.
Cody and Ollie left the collision fighting for their lives.
Cody spent his 32nd birthday in a hospital room alone, with no family allowed to visit under COVID-19 restrictions. He is now out and at home recovering from a broken jaw, among other serious injuries.
His 6-year-old child was still in a hospital bed Monday at UC Davis Children’s Hospital.
“It’s day by day. They say she may never walk again. Right now, we’re just waiting for her body to heal,” Michele told FOX40.
Only one parent can visit her at a time. Grandmother Michele has not been able to see her since the accident.
“It’s been really hard because we just can’t be with them,” she said. “My granddaughter’s my best friend and I can’t be with her to hold her hand.”
But the Orangevale community is lending support where they can. Friends have set up multiple GoFundMe pages to help with the family’s medical bills. Neighbor Linda Pfister put together a toy drive in front of her home to help lift Ollie’s spirits.
“I just thought that this little girl needs cheering up,” Pfister said. “I mean, oh my gosh, it’s heartbreaking.”
The Jacksons said the outpouring of love is giving them the strength to pull through this living nightmare.
“It’s been a blessing,” Michele said. “I’m so amazed at how the community has come together, people we don’t even know.”
If you would like to participate in the toy drive for Ollie, you can bring toys to Linda Pfister’s home at 7518 Wachtel Way in Orangevale, CA.