San Diego Comic Con rocked by tragic death: ‘Twilight’ fan struck and killed by car outside convention center The 53-year-old woman, identified as Gisela Gagliardi of Kingston, N.Y. - was racing against the light to get back to the line of Twi-hards, which had started to move, that she had been on since Sunday.
BY ETHAN SACKS
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
JULY 10, 2012
A "Twilight" fan was struck and killed by a car in front of a horrified crowd of fellow Twi-hards camping out two days ahead of the opening of San Diego Comic-Con.
The 53-year-old woman was running across a busy crosswalk against the light at 9:20 a.m. She was racing to return to her group on a line organizers were moving, when she was hit, the San Diego Union Tribune reported.
A police spokesman told the newspaper that the woman - identified as Gisela Gagliardi of Kingston, N.Y. - had tried to stop herself before she stumbled and fell into the side of a Suburu Outback.
Gagliardi was unconscious and bleeding from the head when an ambulance arrived. She was later pronounced dead at an area hospital.
“If you pray pls do so now for Twi fan G! She was just hit by a car in front of the convention center! She was unconscious when taken hosp,” one fan (@RobKris13) tweeted.
Fellow Twi-hards mourned the death on Twitter with the hashtag "IPTwiFanG" and have started an online petition to have a moment of silence before Thursday's panel for "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2," which will feature stars Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner.
The Outback's driver, an unidentified 67-year-old San Diego man, was questioned by police, but not charged.
“It is with tremendous sadness that we offer our heartfelt condolences,” San Diego Comic-Con spokesman David Glanzer said in a statement. “Our sincere thoughts and prayers go out to all those involved in this tragic incident.”
San Diego Comic-Con, running from July 12-15, is considered the biggest event on the sci-fi, fantasy and comic book lovers' calendar, regularly drawing 250,000 attendees to the four-day event. A seat inside the Convention Center's Hall H, where Hollywood studios often fly in A-list actors to unveil footage of upcoming movies for the 6,000 fans that can cram inside, is especially coveted.
Gagliardi had been with a group of Twi-hards that had been camping out since Sunday.
“It’s such a sad loss for our community,” a fellow fan, Melissa Sandate of Tucson, told the Union Tribune.