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IE woman dies trying to help dead husband

February 28, 2011 12:00:00 AM PST
Investigators are putting together the pieces of a family tragedy in Menifee.

An elderly man was found dead in his garage and his wife was killed in a freak accident as she tried to help him.

Neighbor Ken Haxton, who lives across the street, witnessed the incident.

It was just after 11 a.m. Sunday when he saw Rose Coats get home in the 27000 block of Upper Crest Court from church.

As she pulled into the garage, she apparently saw her husband face down on the floor.

She got out quickly to help, but Haxton said her car was not completely parked.

"For some reason, she hit the lever and it went into reverse and it started backing up while she was out of the car," Haxton said. "It pinned her between the door frame and the car door."

Coats and her husband, Roy Coats, were pronounced dead at the scene.

Family members said the couple married seven years ago.

People who knew the couple say Coats had a heart of gold and that her husband was an intelligent man.

As family members cope with the tragedy, neighbors offered their condolences.

"That is sad, but they went home together," said neighbor Ophelia Viayra. "I called my daughter and told her. She was like, 'Oh mom, that was weird for both of them to go at the same time,' but that's what happens sometimes."