Rollover survivor on NSB South Causeway tells Daytona paper he & deceased wife were partying at 'Cinco de Mayo'

Alcohol-fueled street party on Flagler Avenue funded with CRA taxpayer dollars

South Causeway fatality in NSB / Headline SurferHeadline Surfer graphic /

NEW SMYRNA BEACH -- The husband who survived a rollover crash early Monday on the South Causeway Bridge that resulted in the violent death of his wife, told the Daytona Beach News-Journal they had been partying on Flagler Avenue's "Cinco de Mayo," an alcohol-fueled festival sponsored by the Flagler Merchants Hospitality Group and funded in part by CRA-taxpayer dollars.

In a story headlined, "Crash kills Port Orange mom on ride home from NSB Cinco de Mayo party," the News-Journal story posted 9:31 p.m. Monday pulled no punches from the first paragraph in connecting the CRA event with the subsequent fatality: After a night on the town having a few drinks, a Port Orange couple were on their way home early Monday when their pickup went out of control on New Smyrna Beach's South Causeway bridge and crashed, killing a 32-year-old mother of three, her husband said.

NSB deadly rollover / Headline SurferHeadline Surfer photo by Henry Frederick / The vehicle involved in early Monday's deadly rollover took the life of a Port Orange mother of three.

Headline Surfer was the first media outlet to report on the 12:45 a.m single-vehicle crash that resulted in the death of of 32-year-old Riccilynn Rigoli, who was pronounced dead at the scene of the horrific rollover in the westbound lanes of the high-rise bridge. 

A preliminary accident report obtained by the 24/7 Internet newspaper from the New Smyrna Beach PD stated the fatality victim and her husband, Donald J. Rigoli, 34, were ejected from their Ford Explorer Sport pick-up truck as it rolled over several times before coming to rest on its side and directly on top of her. The mother of three young daughters -- ages 7, 10, and 11 -- was pronounced dead on scene.

A preliminary accident report obtained by the 24/7 Internet newspaper from the New Smyrna Beach PD stated the fatality victim and her husband, Donald J. Rigoli, 34, were ejected from their Ford Explorer Sport pick-up truck as it rolled over several times before coming to rest on its side and directly on top of her. The mother of three young daughters -- ages 7, 10, and 11 -- was pronounced dead on scene.

Her husband, found some 30 feet from the mangled vehicle, was airlifted to Halifax Health Medical Center in Daytona Beach as a precaution for potential life-threatening internal injuries, but he was released from the ER later in the day Monday after treatment for bumps and bruises.

Neither had been wearing their seat belts and the police report stated witnesses on the road at the time reported the vehicle had going at a high rate of speed when it ascended the bridge, before striking the median barrier and repeatedly rolling over.

An initial police report stated officers who responded to the scene were unsure which of the two was behind the wheel leading up to the crash, but Donald Rigoli told the News-Journal in a phone interview from the hospital that his wife was driving when she lost control and struck the bridge's median concrete barrier.

“All I know is we were out-of-control and we began to flip over,” Rigoli told the print newspaper, adding, “I was being tossed from the front to the back, it was crazy.”

The News-Journal then attributed to Rigoli where the couple had been coming from as follows: Rigoli said the couple were headed home to their Brimfield Court home after an evening at the Cinco de Mayo party on Flagler Avenue in New Smyrna Beach.

Cinco De Mayo was a daylong festival on Flagler, one of six such annual events funded in part by the Community Redevelopment Agency.

The Rigolis had only been married for two years and recently moved to Port Orange from New Smyrna Beach where she had raised her children for the better part of 10 years.

Here is the link to the Daytona Beach News-Journal story:
Crash kills Port Orange mom on ride home from NSB Cinco de Mayo party
Published: Monday, May 6, 2013 at 9:31 p.m.
 

Previous Headline Surfer coverage:

Sidebar: Crash report on South Causeway rollover fatality in New Smyrna Beach
Posted Tue, 2013-05-07 07:58
 
BREAKING NEWS: NSB cops: Woman killed, man airlifted after both ejected in rollover on S. Causeway Bridge
Posted Mon, 2013-05-06 05:14
Henry Frederick Picture

Short Bio

Henry Frederick is publisher of Headline Surfer®, the award-winning 24/7 internet news outlet covering the Daytona Beach-Sanford-Orlando metro area via HeadlineSurfer.com since 2008. A longtime cops & courts reporter focused on breaking news & investigative reporting, Frederick is among the Sunshine State's most prolific daily news reporters, having amassed close to a hundred award-winning byline stories nearly evenly split in print and digital platforms. Frederick earned his Master of Arts in New Media Journalism with academic honors from Full Sail University in Winter Park in February 2019. He was a metro reporter with the Daytona Beach News-Journal for nearly a decade and then served as a city editor for the Taunton Daily Gazette in Taunton, Mass, while maintaining a residence in Central Florida. Prior to moving to Florida, Frederick was a metro reporter for the Rockland Journal-News in West Nyack, NY, for seven years. Headline Surfer was named the Sunshine State's top internet news site by the Florida Press Club in 2018.