It was Frankie Weaver's bright smile that always stood out to those around her. And no matter what life threw her way, she remained resilient, kind and happy -- an aura of positive energy that her family, friends and colleagues in the ABC Unified School District say they will miss dearly.
Frankie Jo Weaver, 62, was killed Monday on the Interstate 40 just east of Newberry Springs Road in a rollover accident that San Bernardino County officials say was the result of tire failure.
Weaver, who had just spent the holiday weekend visiting her mother in Bullhead City, Nev., was driving her Ford Explorer on the westbound I-40 near Barstow at about 11:30 a.m. when the driver's side rear tire blew out, causing her to lose control of the SUV. The vehicle then rolled over several times, and crossed over the center divider before coming to rest on its roof in the eastbound lanes.
First responders discovered Weaver suspended inside the overturned vehicle with her seatbelt still fastened. She was declared dead at the scene, according to the San Bernardino County coroner's division.
Mourning the Loss of a Mother, a Friend, a Longtime ABCUSD Educator
Willa Hall, the victim's best friend and longtime neighbor, last talked to Weaver before she left for her annual Veterans Day trip to see her mother in Nevada.
"Frankie was more like a sister to me than a friend," Hall said. "You can't find a better, more giving person than her. And no matter what happened, she always had a smile for people."
Weaver, who moved to Cerritos in January 1971, has worked as a paraeducator for special needs students at Haskell Middle School for more than two decades. She also spent two years at Tetzlaff Middle School.
"In two weeks she would have made her 25-year mark working in the ABC Unified School District," said Elaine Lima, a world history teacher and ASB advisor at Haskell who has been friends with Weaver for 24 years. "She worked with special ed students alongside teacher Andy Knobloch, and she came to school happy every day."
As a teacher's assistant, Weaver worked closely with a select group of 9 to 15 special needs students each school year, taking them to art class, and accompanying them to a variety of school activities and excursions.
"She would always treat the kids like they were her own, she'd go to lunch and sit with them every day. Always making sure they followed the same school rules and were treated the same way as the other students," Lima said. "She was awesome with those kids and I can't even begin to tell you how wonderful she was."
Weaver's two sons, Wayne and Chad, are products of the ABC Unified School District both having graduated from Artesia High School in the early 90s.
"She was the best person I have ever known," said Chad, the youngest of the two.
As news of the tragic accident spread, friends and family of the Weavers showed an outpouring of love and support to Weaver's two sons on Facebook.
"... I lost my best friend, my world, my everything!!! I will now live my life for my mom and i will live it to the fullest!! I will honor her and she now will live on thru me and my family!!! ..." Wayne Weaver posted as his Facebook status on Tuesday.
In addition to her two sons, Weaver is survived by her mother, brother and granddaughters Sydney, 8, and Reese, 4.
Memorial Service to Be Held on Nov. 17
A memorial service for Frankie Jo Weaver will be held on Saturday, Nov. 17th at 11:30 am at St. Joseph Parish located at 6220 E. Willow St. in Long Beach. Anyone is welcomed to attend.
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