Driver Sought in Hit-and-Run Crash That Killed 58-Year-Old Grandmother in Orange

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Officials and the victim’s family asked for the public’s help Wednesday in identifying a driver who fled after fatally striking a grandmother in Orange.

The Orange Police Department said the incident happened around 6:30 a.m. on Tuesday in the area of Katella Avenue and Glassell Street, where several business, including a gas station and a convenience store, are located.

Celsa Anaya, 58, is seen in an undated photo provided by her family after she was killed in a hit-and-run crash in Orange on Oct. 23, 2018.
Celsa Anaya, 58, is seen in an undated photo provided by her family after she was killed in a hit-and-run crash in Orange on Oct. 23, 2018.

The victim, 58-year-old Celsa Anaya, was walking across the street when a vehicle hit her, according to police.

Her family said she was on her way to work and switching buses at the time.

Paramedics took Anaya to a nearby hospital, where she died, the Police Department said.

She leaves behind six children, as well as 10 grandchildren, according to loved ones.

Police said grainy surveillance video of the incident shows Anaya crossing Glassell Street in a marked crosswalk when a white pickup runs her over, then keeps going. The truck was last seen heading east on Katella Avenue.

Anaya’s daughter, Eunice Anaya, said her mother was “a really hard-working woman.”

“She raised all of us on her own, all six children on her own,” she said.

The pain of her mother’s loss has been exacerbated by the violent and unresolved nature of her death, Eunice added.

“It’s something heartbreaking — losing a parent the way she went,” she said.

The family wants to publicly thank an unknown Good Samaritan who called police and stayed by Celsa’s side during her last moments until authorities arrived, said Monica Anaya, the victim’s daughter-in-law.

“On behalf of the family, we want to say thank you for taking his time to be there in her last moment,” she said.

But they also had a message for the pickup driver involved.

“For the person who did this, if he’s watching this, for him to have a heart,” Eunice said. “He has a mother — or she, whatever it is — he wouldn’t like this for himself.”

Police have yet to determine the suspect’s gender, and are asking anyone who could aid in their investigation to come forward.

“If anybody has any information, I’m begging you guys — please come forward, say something,” Eunice said.

The family has set up a GoFundMe campaign to help cover her memorial costs.

Anyone with information on the case can call Detective Craig Brown at 714-744-7342 or the Police Department at 714-744-7444.

KTLA’s Marissa Wenzke contributed to this report.

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