High school sophomore mourned in Malverne

Girl in critical condition after Merrick Road crash


A 13-year-old girl was in critical but stable condition after a fatal car crash that killed her 15-year-old sister in Valley Stream last week.

At around 9:23 p.m. on Jan. 28, according to Nassau County police, Cindy Garcia, 15, and her sister, Elizabeth Garcia Gamez, 13, both of Lynbrook, were traveling in a 2000 Toyota, driven by a 19-year-old male cousin, heading westbound on West Merrick Road near Boden Avenue. They were all heading home from Cindy’s Sweet 16 rehearsal that night.

The driver then struck a 2009 Toyota Camry, driven by a 31-year-old man, which was heading westbound and made a U-turn in front of the 2000 Toyota, police said. 

The two-car collision caused the 2000 Toyota to hit multiple parking meters and a utility pole on West Merrick Road, police said, before stopping in the eastbound lanes. Elizabeth Garcia was ejected from the vehicle.

All occupants involved in the crash were transported to area hospitals, police said.
A staff physician pronounced Cindy Garcia dead at 10:30 p.m. Her sister was listed in critical condition with severe head and body trauma, while the 19-year-old was admitted with non-life-threatening injuries. The driver of the other vehicle was not injured.

Cindy Garcia was a sophomore at Malverne High School. She entered the district is 2012, after attending Valley Stream schools.

“Cindy was a positive and happy spirited girl who was liked by many people,” Malverne Superintendent Dr. James Hunderfund said. “She enjoyed playing soccer and being with her friends. In the short time that she was with us, she left a huge impact within our district.”

Malverne High School Principal Dr. Vincent Romano said Cindy was a sweet girl who always stayed positive with a big smile and a student that people always wanted to be around.

“The children were just devastated and they found out [about Cindy’s death] during the school day that morning,” Romano said. “She just had a really nice core of friends.”
Elizabeth Garcia Gamez is an eighth-grader at Howard T. Herber Middle School.

Page 1 / 2