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Family grieves after Goleta grandfather struck and killed by truck

The family of a Goleta grandfather who was hit and killed by a truck is grieving the loss.

88-year-old Roman Paredes was riding his three-wheel bicycle along Calle Real near San Mateo Avenue on Sept. 23 around 6:30 a.m. when he was struck by a GMC pickup truck.

Paredes rode that same route every morning for years, as he traveled from Goleta to Isla Vista to collect items to recycle.

“That was his routine and that was the job he was doing to survive with my mom,” said daughter Elizabeth Paredes-Garcia.

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office said the driver of the pickup truck, 33-year-old Daniel Gruetzmacher of Goleta, took his eyes off of the road and drifted into the bicycle lane.

Once the investigation is complete, the case will be forwarded to the Santa Barbara County District Attorney’s Office to determine if any charges will be filed.

Paredes was living with his wife in a garage, after the couple was kicked our of their apartment in Isla Vista four years ago.

Paredes was trying to get enough money together so they could move into a new apartment.

“They don’t have a bathroom. They don’t have a sink. She cooks on a stove, the ones that you use for camping. They were trying to get money to at least buy a trailer so they could live,” said Paredes-Garcia.

The family said Paredes was hard-working, loving and had many years ahead of him.

“He was 88. Maybe some people can say he was old, but he was everything and for us he was young,” said Paredes-Garcia.

The family has set up a GoFundMe site to help pay for expenses.

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