Lightning strike death: Woman killed in Pico Rivera while walking dogs identified as 52-year-old Antonia Mendoza Chavez

PICO RIVERA, Calif. (KABC) — The woman who was killed by lightning in Pico Rivera on Wednesday has been identified — and home surveillance footage shows what her owner believes to be her last moments alive.

Authorities say Antonia Mendoza Chavez, 52, and her two dogs were killed by lightning on Wednesday morning.

Paramedics and police were called to the area of ​​Rimbank and Mines Avenues near the San Gabriel River around 8:50 a.m.

Pico Rivera City Manager Steve Carmona said Chavez was found dead on the way with her two dogs.

She had apparently been struck by lightning as thunderstorms rolled through Southern California in the morning.

Eyewitness News spoke with Gloria Colocho, who said she was Chavez’s landlady. She told ABC7 that Chavez hikes this trail every morning.

Colocho shared footage from her Nest camera showing what she claims to be Chavez walking her dogs on Wednesday morning.

“I called her and texted her and she didn’t answer, and the message didn’t go to the cellphone,” Colocho said. “I called her and it went straight to voicemail, and from there I had this feeling it was her. I checked my camera…she left around 7:30 and I see her with her two dogs, and she’s gone home and she hasn’t come back at all.”

The city has warned local residents to stay indoors until the storm has passed.

“We should all be careful with this activity taking place in the area,” Carmona said. “We want everyone to be careful. There is a lot of instability in the air. Just be careful and do your best to stay indoors at this time.”

RELATED: Thunder and Lightning Strike as Storm Sweeps SoCal

Deaths from lightning are very rare in California.

There have been only nine deaths in the state since 2006, and this was the first this year.

The nation as a whole sees about six lightning fatalities through June 22 in an average year.

News of the tragedy troubled locals.

“I’m scared,” said Mary Perez, who lives in the area. “I told my granddaughter and her friend, she’s not walking to school, I’m taking her. I think about lightning more. Not that I’ve ever thought about it. I didn’t think it could really do that. It’s just awful.”

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