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Coroner Identifies Pedestrian Killed on 101 in Santa Barbara

UPDATE – The Santa Barbara County Coroner has identified the man killed Tuesday morning while walking along Highway 101 as 22-year-old Simon Chavez of Santa Barbara.The hit and run crash happened in the southbound lanes around 1:00 am between the Ortega Street foot bridge and the Castillo off ramp.Santa Barbara Unified School District officials confirm Chavez graduated in 2008 from Santa Barbara High School and volunteered as a baseball coach for the Dons.His former coach turned colleague describes the young man as dedicated and a hard worker who was going back to school to get his teaching credential.”We are gonna miss him. There’s just no way to describe it. We’re all in shock. He was once a student and when we we’re done, we we’re friends and I think if you could have Simon as a friend, you’re not doing too bad,” said Bill Oliphant, SBHS baseball coach. 911 dispatchers received calls from drivers about a man staggering in the traffic lanes. The California Highway Patrol says it took them about three minutes to figure out exactly where the man was, but it was too late. Chavez had already been struck and killed by the time law enforcement made it to the scene.Authorities are looking for a white Hyundai with front end and driver’s side damage. The driver’s side mirror was found in traffic lanes. The Hyundai was last seen heading southbound on Highway 101.CHP Spokesman Officer James Richards said as of late Wednesday morning, investigators had no leads on the car involved.Investigators are waiting for toxicology results on the victim. If you know anything about the car or the driver, call the California Highway Patrol at 967-1234.There is a fund set up for Simon Chavez at Keypoint Credit Union in Goleta.

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