Senior Suffers Fatal Medical Emergency Seated in Tow Truck

Taylor Martinez

A 78-year-old Cathedral City man died Tuesday when he suffered a medical emergency on Interstate 10 in Beaumont hours after getting the COVID-19 vaccine at an area Veterans Health Administration hospital.

The initial 911 call came in about 2:05 p.m. on the I-10 Oak Valley Parkway eastbound offramp, according to the California Highway Patrol.

Officer Matt Napier said the septuagenarian and another person were en route home from getting him his COVID-19 shot when their car broke down near Calimesa Boulevard. They called for a tow truck, which picked them up and continued eastbound toward the Coachella Valley.

While in transit on the I-10, the victim, who fell asleep earlier in the trip, could not be awakened, spurring the tow truck driver to pull over at Oak Valley Parkway, Napier said.

Despite first responders’ attempts to save him, the man was pronounced dead at the scene. No specifics about his medical emergency were released, and his name was not immediately released.

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