LOS GATOS, Calif. (KRON) – A Los Gatos man is overcome by heartbreak after his wife and 12-year-old daughter died in a fiery crash in Santa Clara.
“I’m still in denial. It’s not possible,” Christopher Chambers told KRON4.
Chambers’ wife, Beidi, and his 12-year-old daughter, Elyse, died on the afternoon of June 14. The mother and daughter were on their way to a doctor’s office when their Tesla Model Y crashed into a tree and burst into flames.
What happened beforehand is a mystery.
“They had an appointment at 2:15. They left around 1:45, which shouldn’t have been an issue with getting there on time without a rush. (At) about 2:30 the doctor called, and said they never showed up for their appointment,” Chambers said.
Confused, Chambers tried looking for their location on the Tesla app and called their phones. There was no response. He decided to take his son and drive toward the doctor’s office. Within minutes, he saw dark smoke, and then a horrific scene swarmed by first responders.
Chambers wrote, “We ran towards it, through the throng of emergency responders, only to find a burning, twisted white Tesla Model Y.”
“The firefighters and the police were very gentle, but they wouldn’t let me anywhere near the scene,” he said. “One of the firefighters came over to me and held me and made eye contact, and he just said keep your memories. Remember them that way because if we left and you see them, then that’s something you would never forget.”
Beidi, who Chambers met while studying in China, was strong and smart. She always had high expectations for her family, he said.
“She was just a very remarkable person. Always, always striving for more,” he said.
Elyse, a blossoming musician, would have celebrated her 13th birthday on Tuesday. Chambers says she was genuinely nice to everyone.
“She really had a good heart and it wasn’t BS. She really was. That was just her nature. I couldn’t have forced her to be nasty or mean or anything. I just couldn’t because that just wasn’t who she was,” he said.
Chambers and his 8-year-old son, Ethan, have struggled to come to grips with their new reality. Without a wife, without a daughter, without a mom, and without a sister.
The next obstacle is a burial, which Chambers is grateful to get help with through a GoFundMe. As of June 27, more than $86,000 had been raised by strangers, friends, and family.
Chambers is hoping to get closure by learning from investigators what happened before his wife and daughter died.
“Whatever comes out of all this about how they ended up where they did, it shouldn’t have exploded, caught fire, whatever you want call it, so quickly that they couldn’t get out,” he said.