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Neighbors remember woman fatally struck by car after pulling dog off street

February 14, 2011 |  8:07 am

 

Friends and family built a memorial Sunday night at the spot where a woman was struck and killed in Laguna Niguel after she grabbed a dog that had wandered into traffic.

Mara Steves, 48, was a former PTA president at a local elementary school and a well-known face around the neighborhood.

She was jogging about 11 a.m. Sunday when she saw the dog darting into traffic and stopped to grab it, sheriff's Lt. Ted Boyne said. She was kneeling with it on the corner of Moulton Parkway and Nueva Vista Drive when two cars collided nearby. At least one of the cars ran onto the sidewalk, striking Steves, Boyne said. She was declared dead at the scene.

All three occupants of the two cars were treated at a nearby hospital, though none for life-threatening injuries. Boyne said the driver of one car, a 59-year-old man, was treated for a bruised leg, and his passenger, a 56-year-old woman, suffered a broken collarbone. A 27-year-old man in the other car had bumps and bruises.

The cause of the collision remains under investigation. Boyne said it appears that the dog had nothing to do with it. It was gone when emergency crews arrived.

The identities of those involved were not immediately released.

Neighbors described Steves to KTLA-TV Channel 5 as a tireless community volunteer willing to help them with problems and known for her friendly smile.

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-- Mitchell Landsberg

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