HUNTINGTON BEACH (CBSLA) — Huntington Beach residents were grieving Thursday night after a beloved teacher was killed in a Wednesday night crash with a teenage driver who was allegedly drunk.
“She’s my daughter’s favorite substitute teacher,” Lily Pham, a neighbor, said.
Susan Palmer, 61, was killed Wednesday night after the car she was in was struck by a 17-year-old from Westminster driving the wrong way on Gothard Street in Huntington Beach at about 9:30 p.m. The teen, who police said was driving under the influence, collided into the car where Palmer was a passenger.
She was taken to the hospital with major internal injuries and later died. The driver and other passengers suffered minor injuries.
“I just cannot believe it,” Thang Pham, a neighbor, said. “I don’t know how to describe it.”
Neighbors said Palmer had been married for decades to the love of her life, Johnny “Ace” Palmer, a professional musician. The pair had two daughters together, one who just got engaged.
“I don’t know how Johnny, how he’s going to handle without Susan,” Lily said. “They were such a sweet, loving couple. They were always together.”
The teen driver was arrested on suspicion of felony DUI and gross vehicular manslaughter.