SAN DIEGO — A local woman who lived in Imperial Beach and worked in Coronado was among those killed when a boat caught fire Monday off Santa Cruz Island, a coworker of the victim confirms.
Nicole Quitasol, who worked at Nicky Rottens Bar & Burger Joint, died in the fire, along with four of her family members, according to a GoFundMe campaign set up by her coworker.
“Nicole has worked with our Nicky Rottens Coronado family for years, and she will be remembered as an adventurous and loving soul,” Bryn Butolph wrote.
Butolph said Quitasol loved the water and above all her dog, a Golden Retriever named Peanut Butter.
Nicole and her four family members — her two sisters, her father and her step-mother — all lost their lives in the boat fire.
Of the 39 people on board — 33 passengers and six crew — only five people have been found alive. The five survivors are all crew members.
In a news conference Tuesday morning, officials said 20 bodies had been recovered. Divers had spotted another four to six victims during their search, but the boat would need to be stabilized before they could be retrieved, authorities added.
The Coast Guard announced they would be calling off their search and rescue efforts. Officials said all those still unaccounted for were feared dead and that the effort would transition to a “recovery mission.”
The GoFundMe campaign is raising money to help with the funeral costs of the five family members.