On Tuesday, friends and family celebrated the life of special-education teacher Ivania Galindo, 45, at a memorial service held at Delta Vista Middle School. The Oakley resident died Dec. 18 at Kaiser Permanente in Antioch. The official cause of death is as yet undetermined, pending the results of an autopsy performed earlier this week.
“Ivania was the love of our lives and held the family together,” said David Medina, Galindo’s brother. “We’re devastated; we never even got a chance to say goodbye.”
Galindo taught special education at Delta Vista and was, said Delta Vista Principal Greg Hetrick, a popular and compassionate teacher: “She was just a great lady. She was someone who always found the positives, was always smiling and was as much of a mother to her students as a teacher. She was always looking out for her student’s best interests, always advocating for them and challenging them as well. This is a huge loss for all of us.”
Galindo had been involved in an auto accident on Dec. 8 when her car collided with a Contra Costa County fire truck on the corner of Main Street and Cypress Road in Oakley, but it is as yet unknown whether her death is connected to the accident.
“What we do know,” said Oakley Police Chief Chris Thorsen, “is that we took a report that day (of the accident) and that Mrs. Galindo was transported to the hospital with a complaint of pain. It’s unclear at this point if her death is the result of the traffic collision; we’re awaiting the results of the autopsy. It’s all very sad and our thoughts and prayers go out to her family.”
Vintage Parkway Elementary teacher Lucy Moyer, 38, passed away on Dec. 14 following a battle with breast cancer. The Oakley resident was an active participant in the community and volunteered in her children’s activities, including the Aquaknights swim team and the Contra Costa Children’s Choir.
“It’s been a tough week for Oakley educators,” said Hetrick. “Our thoughts are with all the families.”
Galindo and Moyer bring the number of Oakley educators who died last week to three. Freedom High School teacher Charles Edgle Smith, 56, died after his motorcycle collided with a street sweeper on Dec. 17.