Family mourns father killed on Father’s Day

Octavio Escatel

ESCONDIDO, Calif. — A father of three who was killed on Sunday pushing a 70-year-old woman out of the way of a drunken driver is being remembered as a hero.

Octavio Escatel, 38, jumped into action when he saw a Jeep stalled in the middle of the intersection Broadway and state Route 78 in Escondido. An elderly couple was trying to push their vehicle off the road, and Escatel joined them. Moments later, a Toyota RAV4 careened into the Jeep. Escatel shoved the 70-year-old woman out of the way, but he was killed. He died on Father’s Day.

“He was always looking to help out,” said David Valenzuela, a spokesman for the Escatel family. “Always putting someone else before h — that human instinct of saving a li — just specific people have that gift.”

Escatel was a manager at the Hilton San Diego Spa and Resort. Colleagues said he was wonderful to work for. One of his employees said Octavio “didn’t act like a boss, because he worked so hard.”

Escatel leaves behind three children ages 9, 11, and 16. Family members have started a GoFundMe site to help raise money for a hero’s funeral.