Gerardo F. Jaramillo had a plan. Thursday he would drive to his brother’s house in Tucson and then head over to the popular sand dunes in Glamis located this side of Imperial Valley in California.
The 39-year-old never made it.Jaramillo of Nogales died of injuries sustained when his SUV went off Interstate 19 and rolled over about six miles north of the city limits.
At about 9:35 p.m. Jaramillo was driving northbound when he lost control of his 1989 GMC after the trailer he had in tow blew a tire, said a spokesman for the Arizona Department of Public Safety.
The SUV went off the road onto a dirt shoulder on the right side of the freeway, smashed into a section of guard rail, went down an embankment and rolled.
Jaramillo was ejected from the vehicle. He was not wearing a seat belt, according to DPS.His friends and fellow co-workers at the Santa Cruz County Justice of the Peace Court had celebrated an office Thanksgiving meal on Wednesday.
On Monday, the mood was somber.It had been reported by various media outlets that Jaramillo was from Tucson. “No, he was one of ours,” said Bernie Angulo, a colleague at the court.
County officials said Jaramillo worked as a Santa Cruz detention officer from 1994-97, when he joined the Justice Court Precinct No. 1. He remained there except for a brief stint in 2005 when he was employed by the county recorder’s office.