On her last shift before she was supposed to leave for graduate school, an Emergency Medical Technician died when a car slammed into her ambulance in East Brunswick, New Jersey, on Saturday morning, reports NJ.com.
Hinal Patel planned to start graduate school at Rutgers University next month, to study biomedical sciences. She came to work for her last shift as an EMT, prepared for a busy shift.
"She had said 'Today's going to be a long day,'" best friend Bianca Patel (no relation) said. "That was her Snapchat. It was supposed to be her last day on call."
East Brunswick Police Lt. Kevin F. Zebro stated that the 22-year old and Mark Seube, the ambulance driver, hurried to respond to an accident, with their lights and sirens on. While they passed through an intersection, a Prius t-boned them, reports the New York Daily News. The ambulance flipped onto its side and slid into another car.
Hinal died from the impact, and Seube and the Prius driver, Kathleen Meade, were taken to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries. The third car was not injured, notes NJ.com.
"[Hinal] was the most amazing person I ever knew," Bianca said. "She's saved thousands and thousands of people. ... I just wish someone had a chance to help her."
Hinal is survived by her only sibling, an 18-year-old brother, Neel Patel, who remembers her fondly.
"She really loved medicine," Neel said. "Some people just do this EMT stuff to make it look good on their resume or whatever. But she was truly passionate about (being an) EMT and what she was doing."
Hinal joined the North Stelton Volunteer Fire Company in April 2012, where she completed her EMT training later that year, according to a statement the fire company released.
"Hinal was a very smart, dedicated member of our family and she will be greatly missed," the fire company said. "She had many close friends at North Stelton.
"The members of the North Stelton Volunteer Fire Company are devastated by her loss and extend our deepest condolences to her family, friends and coworkers."
The East Brunswick Police Department Special Operations Section is currently investigating the fatal crash.