By JASON ECK
Aimee Eaton's 1-year-old daughter, Halee, meant the world to her.
And she loved her husband, Brian, and was devoted to her friends, family and coworkers.
She also loved Tuolumne County and Sonora and had every intention of bringing up her daughter here with her husband.
But those plans came to an end Thursday afternoon when the 27-year-old Sonora woman was struck by a car and killed on Stockton Road in Sonora. An elderly man lost control of his car after suffering complications from a blood clot that stopped his heart.
In many ways, Thursday was typical for the Eatons. Aimee had Thursdays off from her job as a sales agent at Sonora Insurance Agency in the Mono Village Center in East Sonora. She and Brian, 28, an environmental health technician for Tuolumne County, had been spending lunch hours together on her day off ever since their daughter was born.
The Eatons decided to go to Sonora's Woods Creek Rotary Park for a picnic Thursday with Aimee's best friend Wendy Flannery, 29, of the Tuolumne area, and her 16-month-old son, Jackson.
The group enjoyed a picnic together and the Eatons discussed ideas for their upcoming wedding anniversary. The couple would have celebrated their fourth year of marriage Thursday, April 17.
They thought about going to Monterey for the weekend, but figured they would wait until the weekend after Easter so they could celebrate their anniversary and the holiday with their families.
After lunch, the group walked Brian back to his job at the Francisco Building across from the courthouse in downtown Sonora.
That was the last time Brian would see his wife alive.
"I left them there, gave them a kiss goodbye and they went back down" to the park, Brian said.
Wendy is nine months pregnant and the women thought a walk might help induce her labor, so they headed back down Stockton Road.
The next thing Brian Eaton knew, Wendy was calling on her cell phone to tell him he had to come.
There had been a tragic accident.