Woodlake woman’s oldest son was killed while walking along a country road last month near Plainview
WOODLAKE – Parents should never have to bury their children but life does not follow rules of the heart. Death strikes families every day and young people are often the victims of drugs, crime and accidents. Those unexpected tragedies where there is no discernible cause and no one to blame are made more difficult when there is no way to cover the costs of providing a proper burial for your child.
These are all harsh realities for Carmen Lopez of Woodlake who lost her oldest son a month ago when he was hit by car walking down a rural road. At about 8:45 p.m. on Friday, June 8, 17-year-old Angel Godinez was walking along a dimly lit county road without sidewalks and wearing dark clothing in the twilight hours when he was struck by a 2008 Ford traveling westbound on Avenue 192 west of Road 200 near Plainview. According to the California Highway Patrol (CHP) Porterville Area, the driver, 58-year-old Consuelo Mendiola of Exeter, told officers she was unable to see Godinez walking in the roadway because of his clothing, the time of day and the lighting in the area.
Mendiola attempted to take evasive actions but was unable to avoid striking the juvenile. Mendiola was not arrested and neither alcohol nor drugs were a factor in this collision.
Godinez was pronounced dead at the scene and his body has yet to be buried because his mother, a single mother of five, can’t afford it.
A relative, Arnold Diaz of Goshen, started a GoFundMe.com site on behalf of Godinez’s mother to help raise money for Godinez’s family to pay for his funeral expenses. To date, the family has only raised $736 of their $9,000 goal.