Tow truck procession crosses San Diego for driver killed on NYE while servicing a car

EL CAJON, Calif. — A 50-plus tow truck procession took place Saturday in honor of tow truck driver Dale Alan Pumphrey who died while servicing a car on New Year’s Eve.

“Everyone is here showing our respect, doing a last ride for our friend,” said Yousif, a AAA tow truck driver, and Pumphrey’s friend. “It’s one of the most dangerous jobs in the United States.”

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On Dec. 31, California Highway Patrol said Dale got a service call on Southbound 125 in Spring Valley.

CHP said in a release that as Dale loaded a car onto his flatbed, a 60-year old driver in a Prius crashed into the left rear of the Hino flatbed tow truck. The Toyota Prius subsequently struck Pumphrey, according to CHP.

Pumphrey died at the scene, despite lifesaving efforts. CHP said the other driver was not injured.

The procession of tow trucks started at 10 a.m. Saturday in El Cajon, heading to the funeral service on Imperial Ave.

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Yousif’s message to drivers — “please, we are trying to deliver a message very loud. Slow down and move over if you see a tow truck on the side of the freeway helping somebody.”

CHP says they are still investigating the cause, including who is at fault, and that drugs or alcohol are not believed to be a factor in the crash. A GoFundMe has been set up for Dale’s family.


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