Youth Baseball Coach Dies when His Truck Overturns into San Luis Reservoir near Highway 152
MERCED COUNTY, CA (July 28, 2017) – A 47-year-old man was killed when the vehicle he was driving overturned into the San Luis Reservoir in Merced County.
He was identified Friday by the Merced County Coroner’s Office as Tom Gugale of Castroville. Gugale was driving a 1992 GMC pickup truck, traveling eastbound on Highway 152 with three teenage passengers around 8:00 a.m., CHP reported.
The truck was heading eastbound of the Cottonwood Recreation Area on a stretch referred to as Rock Bridge when for an unknown reasons, Gugale allowed the vehicle to travel south off of the roadway. The truck then crashed through a chain-link fence before overturning into the reservoir.
Passersby and an officer jumped into the waterway to rescue the victims. Sadly, Gugale did not survive and was pronounced dead at the scene. It is still unclear if he died from his injuries or by drowning.
A 17-year-old Salinas boy sustained major injuries and was taken to a local hospital. The other two passengers, an 18-year-old Isaiah Bueno and a 16-year-old, both from Hollister, suffered minor injuries.
Officers believe that alcohol is not a factor in the crash. All four people were wearing seat belts.
Officers said Gugale was a youth baseball coach, and they believe he was taking three boys to a game. The truck was full of baseball equipment.
Investigation of this fatal incident is still ongoing.
We are one with the bereaved family and friends of Tom Gugale during this very unfortunate time of their lives.
The sudden loss of a loved one is a difficult time for any family. During this time, there are many questions and decisions that need to be made, and although nothing can bring back your loved one, our wrongful death attorneys at The Law Offices of Jacoby & Meyers can help seek justice for your loss. We will fight hard to hold the responsible party accountable. Learn more about the process by speaking to one of our representatives today. Schedule a free consultation at at (800) 985-2451.