The teen hasn’t faced any charges yet.
A Placer County Sheriff’s spokesperson confirmed to NBC News that the victim was 41-year-old Casey Rivara.
Police said the single-car accident occurred around 8:15 p.m. last week on Thursday. Rivara parked his vehicle “at the intersection of Park Drive and Stanford Ranch Boulevard” after noticing a mother duck and her ducklings struggling to cross a busy intersection.
A 12-year-old boy witnessed the traumatic scene, confirming to KCRA 3, NBC Sacramento’s affiliate, that Rivara exited his car and sprung into heroic action.
“He got out of the car and was shooing the ducks, and everyone was clapping because he was being really nice,” the child said. “He helped them get up over the curb because all the baby duckies were having trouble, and then he walked in front of our car.”
Police said as Rivara began to walk back to his vehicle in the intersection, the 17-year-old girl behind the wheel, heading eastbound on Stanford Ranch Boulevard, struck the 41-year-old.
The teen girl remained at the scene as witnesses contacted the police. Although medical personnel arrived to assist, Rivara died at the scene.
“We still have a lot of areas and evidence to sort through, but at first look, it does not look like there’s going to be any criminal negligence,” Rocklin police Capt. Scott Horrillo told NBC News.
Following the accident, grievers left flowers and rubber ducks at the intersection where Rivara risked his life to save a duck family.
Rivara left behind his two children and wife, Angel Chow, who took to Facebook to thank everyone for their support and love after losing “the best husband, father and son that anyone can ask for.”
“We have been deeply touched by the overwhelming love and support we’ve received for Casey Rivara and our family in these past few days,” Chow wrote. “We want to express our heartfelt gratitude to all of you for the kind messages and gestures of kindness. It’s truly humbling to hear how Casey has positively impacted your lives, and we’re extremely grateful for that.”
She also asked that witnesses at the scene contact the police with any relevant and helpful information to ensure they do a full and fair investigation.
A GoFundMe was created on behalf of Rivara’s children and wife.