Thursday, February 17, 2011 at 9:57 a.m.
UPDATE, FEB. 17, 10 A.M.: People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals
(PETA) announced today that it will posthumously award Steves with its Compassionate Action Award for rescuing the dog.
"Mara died as she was helping another individual in trouble," said PETA President Ingrid E. Newkirk in a statement issued by PETA. "The death of such a caring soul is a loss not only to family and friends but also to the community. We hope that the example of love and courage that she set in coming to the aid of even the smallest and most vulnerable will inspire others to help animals in distress."
ORIGINAL POST, FEB. 14, 1:22 P.M.: Mara Steves
was jogging down the street on Sunday afternoon when she noticed a dog weaving through oncoming traffic near the intersection of Molton Parkway and Nueva Vista Road in Laguna Niguel.
Moments after Steves, 48, had assisted the dog onto the sidewalk, a motorist ran a red light, collided with another vehicle, and ran up onto the sidewalk, directly into Steves, sending her body into a nearby wall. By Sunday night, the wall was home to a candlelight vigil dedicated to Steves, who died from her injuries.Three motorists were in the hospital yesterday evening being treated for their injuries. The worst was sustained by a 56-year-old woman, who was the passenger in a vehicle, with a broken collarbone. The driver of the vehicle that struck Steves has yet to be released.
Steves was a wife, mother of two and former PTA president at a nearby elementary school.
According to reports, the dog Steves saved ran away following the accident.
Details of the accident and a witness' description are in the KTLA report below.