Just days before the start of San Diego Comic-Con, tragedy has befallen the convention after a fan trying to get her convention pass was struck and killed by a car.
Gisela Gagliardi, 53, was in front of the convention center Tuesday to pick up her convention pass when security attempted to reconfigure the line, according to The Los Angeles Times. According to witnesses, Gagliardi nearly stepped out into the busy street in front of the convention center, but saw an oncoming car. Unfortunately, she was not able to stop herself, and stumbled in front of it, sustaining serious head injuries that later proved fatal.
Gagliardi had traveled from New York and was reportedly excited about the panel discussion for the Twilight franchise's "Breaking Dawn, Part 2." She even tweeted on July 4 that "one week from right this moment ... I will be on line to pick up our 2012 [Comic-Con] badges."
But now friends and fellow fans are mourning the tragedy. Nikki Reed, who plays Rosalie Hale in the Twilight franchise, even tweeted her condolences saying "this is horrible. So sad. I'm speechless."
Dozens of police officers are assigned to handle busy pedestrian traffic each year from San Diego's busy downtown Gaslamp District to the center. Literally hundreds of thousands of people have to cross for every convention, and those officers have been impeccable in making sure so many people stay safe.
Gagliardi graduated from high school in Coleman, Mich., and got an accounting degree from Marist College in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., according to her Facebook page. In June, celebrating actor Edward Cullen's birthday, she posted on Facebook asking "how am I expected to concentrate when they released a new teaser trailer for the final Twilight/'Breaking Dawn' movie coming out in November?" She added a stomped foot, and jokingly said, "I don't wanna work!"
The Times didn't name the 67-year-old driver who hit Gagliardi, who was traveling with his wife. Police said he had a green light at the time, and would not be charged in the accident.
The roads in front of the convention center are very busy streets with high-speed traffic. Anyone attending the convention should strictly follow the directions of police officers directing pedestrian traffic, and make sure the road is clear before crossing.
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