Woman Dies Trying to Help Someone Stuck in the Snow During Calif.'s 'Once-in-a-Generation' Storm
A family is mourning their beloved family member who died while reportedly trying to save someone who was stuck in the snow during California's severe winter storms last weekend.
Barbie Hughes was in Polique Canyon in Big Bear on Saturday when she was "run over and sustained fatal injuries," her sister, Sarah Hughes, explained in a Facebook post on Monday.
"While we're not sure on all the little details yet, something happened," she added.
A San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department spokesman confirmed Barbie's death to Fox News, explaining that "she was killed from a vehicle vs. pedestrian incident."
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The SBCSD did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment.
With travel restrictions and road closures set in place because of the weather, Sarah explained in her Facebook post that airlifting her sister to a local hospital was difficult after emergency services were called.
Her sister, however, was able to be escorted by an officer to a local hospital, where she says she got "into the wheelchair on her own power" and was met by their mother, Sheree Hughes, who "was able to be there with her while she was awake."
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"She was able to hold her hand and tell her how much we love her, so we're grateful for that small piece. Barbie couldn't really talk but was able to say, 'I love you, momma," she added.
After Barbie underwent examination, her family learned that her injuries were "substantial and severe," continued Sarah in her post.
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"As the pain set in, the decision was made to intubate her to provide some relief. The doctors tried, but the broken bones had punctured her lung(s), and one punctured her heart. We were pulled in by the doctor around 3 am on February 26th, she passed away while under sedation," she explained.
On Monday, California Governor Gavin Newsom declared San Bernardino and twelve other counties under a state of emergency due to the record amount of snowfall that stemmed from what the National Weather Service called a "once-in-a-generation storm."
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To offset the cost of Barbie's memorial expenses, her family has created a GoFundMe campaign. It has currently acquired $18,800 in donations.