Police have identified a Westchester woman who died after driving her vehicle into a creek and drowning despite heroic efforts by first responders.
Sandra Fuller, age 63, of Mount Vernon, drove her gray Jeep Cherokee through a fence and plunged at least 20 feet down a ravine and into Eastchester Creek on Friday, June 4 after she had stopped for gas.
"It was such a tragic accident," said Pelham Manor Det. Sgt. Greg Sancho. "Our thoughts and prayers are with her family and friends."
Before the accident happened, Fuller can be seen on cameras at the BJs gas station in Pelham Manor at a gas pump. At one point, she walked into the store and then back to the vehicle.
The vehicle then accelerated and went into the creek, police said.
The first arriving police officer, Pelham Manor Police Officer John Luiso, jumped into Eastchester Creek and reached the vehicle, but was unable to remove Fuller from the locked car.
Rescue efforts were hampered by the murky waters that are near an industrial area. Firefighters at one point had to stop their efforts to receive tetanus shots due to the presumed contaminated waters.
The waters and the angle of the vehicle also made the rescue effort harder, the Pelham Manor Fire Department said.
Sancho also thanked all of the police and fire departments who responded to help save Fuller and search for any other possible victims including the Mount Vernon Police and Fire departments, the FDNY, and the Westchester County Police.
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