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Somerton woman killed in two-car crash
A 23-year-old Somerton woman died as the result of a two-car crash Tuesday night, according to the Yuma County Sheriff's Office.
The woman has been identified as Arlyn Alvarez, a nursing student at Arizona Western College and member of Yuma’s professional belly dancing troupe Banat Tabla.
She was transported with life-threatening injuries to Yuma Regional Medical Center, where she succumbed to her injuries.
The accident occurred at 11:39 p.m., with deputies responding to the intersection of Avenue C and West County 13th Street.
The sheriff's office says a 2010 Mazda sedan driven by Alvarez was traveling eastbound on West County 13th Street while a green 1996 Toyota Corolla driven by Ernesto Guijarro, 42, of Yuma, was southbound on South Avenue C.
According to deputies, Alvarez failed to yield for a stop sign at the intersection, causing the Toyota to strike the Mazda on the driver's side. Both vehicles came to rest off the roadway in a field.
Guijarro sustained critical injuries as a result of the collision and was also taken to YRMC.
Lisa Manchester said she will miss her dear friend of five years but will always remember her for her tremendous love of dance and how easily she made friends.
"She was always cheerful and outgoing, and was a lot of fun to be around," said Manchester, who found out about her friend’s death in a 6:40 a.m. phone call from a former member of the troupe. "She always had a smile for everyone. It was one of those smiles that would light up the room."
Manchester said she met Alvarez when she signed up to take one of the belly dancing classes she taught at AWC. And within a year, Alvarez had begun dancing with the professional troupe.
"We are a pretty small group, so we are a lot like a family," said Manchester.
The cause of the collision is still under investigation; however, alcohol did not appear to be a factor, said officials.
James Gilbert can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 539-6854. Find him on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/YSJamesGilbert or on Twitter @YSJamesGilbert.