DIXON (CBS13) — A tight-knit town is heartbroken and in disbelief after a hit-and-run driver takes the life of a beloved 70-year-old grandma.
The victim, a well-known restaurant owner in Dixon, was often seen walking through town hand in hand with her husband.
The neighborhood grandma Adelina Rendon Díaz started from selling food on the streets of Dixon to having a restaurant, Taqueria Adelina, bearing her name on first street.
“It’s been very hard, I haven’t slept at all, this is a small town, a small community. There was a time that young lady sold tamales out of an ice chest,” said customer Lynn Reed.
More famous than her tamales and tacos were her heart and smile, according to her nephew.
“Her strive to accomplish this American dream and her story just ending like that after being a hard-working individual,” said her nephew Gonzalo Arriago.
That dream ended when Adelina and her husband of 50 years took their daily walk Sunday night. Their granddaughter, Atzimba Bocanegra, was the last one to see them.
“The last conversation was ‘I’ll be right back, I’m going to take my walk.’ She was smiling. I said, ‘Great, go ahead Abuelita.’ I said take care, I always say take care and that was the last,” Bocanegra.
Dixon police say a white Nissan Murano hit the couple in the crosswalk feet away from their restaurant and never stopped. Security video obtained by CBS13 appears to show the moments leading up to the fatal crash. Diaz’s family says with a broken leg, her husband tried to crawl back to the restaurant to get help.
“You are expecting to have your family come back and you see a disaster out there. My uncle was a soldier out there,” said Arriago.
Now her family is grasping to the memories of a woman who taught so many the meaning of love.
“Everything I am today, has been part of her,” said Bocanegra. “She was very inspiring for not only the community but also her family.”
The family says they hope the driver feels regret and turns themselves in. They say Adelina’s husband is recovering in the hospital.
Dixon police recovered the vehicle involved on Monday but say no one was inside. They are still searching for the suspect.