Local Man Among Spectators Killed in Rally Race Wreck

Riverside man performs a last act of heroics before rally race turns deadly

By John Adams and Michelle Wayland
|  Sunday, Aug 15, 2010  |  Updated 1:39 PM PDT
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An off-road truck plowed into a crowd, killing eight people and injuring 12 others.

An off-road truck plowed into a crowd, killing eight people and injuring 12 others.

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A Riverside man pushed two children out of the way of a careening truck, but was among the eight people killed at an off-road vehicle race held in San Bernardino County.

Andrew Therrin, 22, was pronounced dead at the scene, the San Bernardino County coroner said Sunday morning. He was killed just after he spotted the airborne truck Saturday evening at the "California 200" off-road race, an event being held at a state park in the California dry lake desert north of Big Bear.

Therrin's last act was to shove two children, including his daughter, to safety, said friend Derek Cox.

"I owe my son's life, as well as many others including his daughter, who was inches away from him," Cox said of his friend.

Brett Sloppy from San Marcos was listed as the driver of the truck that crashed, number 1461, according to MDRRacing.com.

“So incredibly lost and devastated my thoughts and prayers go out to all the families and friends involved. Thank you too all my friends for sticking with me even thru these tragic times I love you all,” Brett Sloppy wrote on his Facebook page Sunday.

Two men from Escondido -- Brian Wolfin, 27, and Anthony Sanchez, 23 -- were pronounced dead at the scene. A third Escondido man, Aaron Farkas, 25, died at Loma Linda University Medical Center three hours after the crash.

Also identified as killed at the scene were Danica Frantzich, 20, of Las Vegas; Zachary Freeman, 24, of Fillmore; and Dustin Malson, 24, of Ventura.

The San Bernardino County sheriff and coroner confirmed seven fatalities as of Sunday afternoon, and the eighth victim was transported to Riverside County and died.  The name of that victim has yet to be released.

The crash occurred when spectators clustered along an off-road vehicle race were crushed when a pickup truck went airborne and rolled. The disaster at the "California 200" race was inside the Johnson Valley Off Highway Vehicle Park, a state-run recreation area about 60 miles northeast of Riverside.

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