'Twilight' Fan Killed at Comic-Con After Being Struck By a Car
A die-hard Twilight fan died outside of the San Diego Convention Center Tuesday after getting hit by a car trying to secure her spot in line for Comic-Con.
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The 53-year-old woman was in a crosswalk and had a red light when she tried to run across Harbor Drive toward the convention center about 9:20 a.m., said police Sgt. Ron Glass, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.
The driver of one car saw her and slowed down, but the driver of a Subaru Outback didn't see her in time, Glass said. The pedestrian tried to stop her own momentum when she saw the oncoming Subaru but tripped and hit the side of the car, Glass said.
He said the woman was crossing the street alone, and there were apparently no other pedestrians nearby who witnessed the accident.
An ambulance took the unconscious woman, who was bleeding profusely from her head, to a hospital where she died.
Fans said the convention center staff was about to switch the line, so the beginning became the end, and that she was running to keeping her place in line.
"It's such a sad loss for our community," said 23-year-old Melissa Sandate of Tucson, who is a fellow fan of the "The Twilight Saga."
Friends on social media networks have identified her as Gisela Gagliardi, an accountant visiting from Kingston, N.Y.
Driver of the Subaru Outback, a 67-year-old San Diego resident, stopped and interviewed by police officers. His was a passenger, Glass said.
"It is with tremendous sadness that we offer our heartfelt condolences," said Comic-Con spokesman David Glanzer. "Our sincere thoughts and prayers go out to all those involved in this tragic incident."
Gagliardi's passion for "Twilight" is well-documented on her Facebook page, according to the San-Diego Union-Tribune. In 2010, she posted a photo of her and a friend posing with the movie's star, Robert Pattinson, in Los Angeles. She also mentions standing in line at Comic-Con last year.
The paper reported that shortly after the crash, fans took to Twitter under the hashtag #RIPTwiFanG to express their condolences. They said they were working to organize a moment of silence. A memorial fund has been set up for her family.
According to Fox News, Lionsgate and Summit Entertainment, the film's distributors, released the following statement late Tuesday: "Lionsgate, Summit and the entire 'Twilight' community are saddened by the death of a Comic-Con fan today due to a traffic accident during the hours leading up to this year's convention in San Diego. Our thoughts and condolences go out to the victim's family and friends. She will be respectfully remembered this Thursday in Hall H."