Young mom hit and killed by truck in Fort Worth didn't get to see her son
FORT WORTH -- Since her son was placed in foster care in January, Tina Sigarroba had been working hard to get the 3-year-old back home, family and friends say.
The 21-year-old Fort Worth woman completed parenting classes and was almost done with the ordered counseling that she hoped would allow her, her son and her boyfriend, Michael Haley, to move back to their hometown of Casa Grande, Ariz.
"She loved her son very much and was trying to do anything she could to bring him home and be reunited with him," said her sister, Lisa Sigarroba.
Monday morning, Sigarroba left the north Fort Worth hotel room she shares with Haley to make the two-mile walk to a fast food restaurant for her weekly visit with her son. She was especially excited, Haley said, because she had been unable to make the last few visits after having surgery.
But the visit never happened.
Sigarroba was killed around 12:30 p.m. after being struck by a pickup that had jumped a curb while traveling south on North Beach Street.
The pickup's driver told police that his accelerator pedal had gotten stuck and that he lost control of the truck. He said he hit his head after the truck hit the curb, was knocked out, and doesn't remember what happened after that, according to a police report.
Sgt. Pedro Criado, a police spokesman, said blood was drawn from the driver and police were still awaiting toxicology tests Tuesday. He said that the pickup was impounded and that a mechanical inspection will be conducted on the vehicle.
Haley broke into tears as he talked about his plans to surprise Sigarroba with a train trip to the Dallas aquarium on Tuesday -- her 22nd birthday.
Instead, Haley said, he visited the spot where she was killed.
"I'm going to go out where it happened so I can put some balloons and stuff there for her birthday," he said.
Haley, 26, said he had known Sigarroba since she was about 4.
"When I was little, she used to live in the house behind us," Haley said. "A couple years after that, they ended up getting a house right across the street so I've know her that whole time."
A few years back, Haley moved from Arizona to Fort Worth, looking for job opportunities. He and Sigarroba continued to talk over the phone and, one year ago, Sigarroba came to Fort Worth with her young son to live with Haley after their friendship blossomed into romance.
"Before that we were just friends," Haley said. "That's why she was so good, because I've know her for so long and she was so easy to talk to."
But 2012 had proven difficult for the couple, Haley said.
In January, after Sigarroba's son was injured at home, Child Protective Services placed the child in foster care. Haley insists the injury was the result of an accident.
"He fell, he busted his lip and chin open," Haley said. "I guess he fell so hard that his tooth went through his lip. They said that they didn't think it was an accident."
Compounding the bad year, Haley said, was two ectopic pregnancies, the last of which required Sigarroba to undergo emergency surgery.
The recent surgery, Haley said, had recently prevented Sigarroba from being able to walk to the once-a-week visits with her son. They do not have a vehicle, Haley said.
But on Monday, Sigarroba felt well enough to make the trek.
Haley said his girlfriend was supposed to call him after the meeting so he could meet her at the nearby Albertsons and they could walk back to the Budget Suites where they live together.
The call never came.
Haley said he grew increasingly worried as the afternoon wore on with no word from Sigarroba. He was preparing to walk the streets in search of her when a Fort Worth police officer arrived.
"They just told me I needed to get in contact with the medical examiner," Haley said. "I knew something was wrong. If she was OK, they would have told me to go to the hospital."
Lisa Sigarroba said her sister had seven siblings, including a twin brother. She described Sigarroba as a "mama's girl" who was always laughing, was easy to talk to, and a big Oakland Raiders fan.
"She was a happy person. She did everything for her son, everything that she could," said another sister, Julie Jones. "She was planning on coming back home in November to be with the family. Everybody wanted her back home."
Now the family is planning on bringing Sigarroba back to Arizona for burial.
They say they hope to bring her son home soon, too.
Deanna Boyd, 817-390-7655