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Weekend Candlelight Vigil Remembers Oakdale Woman

A large crowd, primarily family and friends of Rebekah Gall, gathered in the late afternoon Saturday, Jan. 22 as the sun was setting, holding candles and sharing memories of the 27-year-old woman, the victim of a drunk driver.

She passed away in a Modesto hospital from injuries suffered in a crash that occurred previously in Tuolumne County.

According to California Highway Patrol officials, Gall was on State Route 49, near Chicken Ranch Road, on Tuesday, Jan. 18 when her southbound car was struck head-on by a vehicle that veered into her lane. That car was driven by a man identified as Theodore Young, 63, of Sonora. He was not hurt in the crash, said the CHP, and was said to be a former Pleasanton Police Department sergeant.

The crash occurred about 5:15 p.m. on Jan. 18 and Gall, who suffered major injuries, was taken to Doctors Medical Center in Modesto by helicopter but later succumbed to her injuries.

Saturday’s vigil was hosted at Valley View Park in Oakdale and many brought flowers and balloon bouquets; a photo of Gall was also set up on a table at the park; many wrote notes to their lost friend. She was married to Michael Gall, a longtime local resident.

Tuolumne County officials said they planned to pursue charges against Young including murder, gross vehicular manslaughter and DUI charges, including having a prior DU conviction.