A 7-year-old Bovina girl drove her father’s crashed Jeep in an attempt get help Saturday night after he was ejected and killed in a rollover east of Clovis.
Guillermo Montes, 40, was pronounced dead around 10 p.m., State Police Capt. Jimmy Glascock said Monday.
The crash occurred on State Road 77, or Pleasant Hill Highway.
Glascock said Montes was speeding and lost control going into a turn, causing his Jeep Cherokee to roll.
Montes’ 7-year-old daughter, Elizabeth Kazza, and 3-year-old son were unrestrained in the vehicle at the time of the crash.
When her father was ejected, Glascock said Elizabeth tried to drive the Jeep to get help, referring to her efforts as heart-breaking.
“She knew he was killed and she was driving to get help in the vehicle,” he said.
“(It took) a lot of courage. … It’s remarkable anybody could drive after something like that.”
She made it about three miles before a passing motorist saw the girl trying to drive the crashed vehicle and stopped to render assistance, he said.
Responders located Montes’ body and he was pronounced dead at the scene.
The crash is being investigated as alcohol related, according to a state police news release.
Glascock said beer bottles were found at the scene and the children made statements that Montes had driven to Clovis to buy beer and was drinking as he headed back to Bovina.
The children were treated at Plains Regional Medical Center for minor bumps and bruises and were turned over to the care of their mother.
Bovina is located about 25 miles north east of Clovis.