A vehicle crash on Dec. 23 took the life of a mother of five, Maria Aviles Tapia of Sisters. Oregon State Police say Aviles was riding as a passenger in a Suzuki XL7 when the driver lost control on an icy road and crashed into a tree. It happened at milepost 3 on Highway 20 near Sisters just before 4pm. The driver sustained minor injuries and went to St. Charles Medical Center in Bend, but Aviles was pronounced dead at the scene.
Aviles worked at Rancho Viejo, a Mexican restaurant in Sisters, where its staff wrote on its Facebook on Saturday, "Yesterday the Rancho Viejo family was sadden[ed] to hear of the death of our employee, coworker, friend, and family member Maria and would like to express our condolences to her family. We have no words to describe how bad and deeply sorry we feel."
Friends started a GoFundMe for Aviles' family, writing, "She leaves behind five children, the youngest one is just 3 years old. She also has a 9, 12, 15, and a 19-year-old. Maria was an amazing mother who worked two jobs to help take care of her family. This is a devastating loss for her family."