“I feel they treated our children like road kill,” Yvonne Angeletti, Jennifer’s mother, said.
Edward and Yvonne Angeletti woke up to Oregon State Police Troopers on their doorstep around 3 a.m. July 22, to every parents’ worst nightmare.
“He said I have to inform you that your daughter Jenny is deceased, so at that point the first thing Yvonne said was, ‘What about Mark?’ and the trooper said, ‘He’s deceased as well,'” Edward said.
OSP says 30-year-old Jennifer Ayala and her fiance, 42-year-old Mark Nienhouse, died when their motorcycle hit an elk on Highway 234, between Meadows Road and Antioch Road. But Edward says he later discovered, there’s more to the story and believes OSP isn’t being fully truthful.
“Something is not right with this investigation. There’s too many details that are just all over the place,” Edward said.
A teenage witness, named Stormie, drove up to the accident, before police even arrived and says Jennifer was still alive after they hit the elk. She performed CPR on Jennifer.
“Jennifer opened her eyes and she said, ‘You’ll be okay, you’ll be okay’ and they kept doing CPR and Jenny was breathing and then she passed away,” Edward said.
Edward immediately went to troopers asking questions.
“Are there any additional details about what occurred that you haven’t shared with us that you’re not allowed to share with us?” Edward said.
It was then, the trooper admitted a second car came down the road. Stormie’s boyfriend tried to wave it down, but the car sped up, driving over Jennifer and Mark.
“They were alive, someone was performing CPR. Why, why is all this information not being disclosed?” Edward said.
Edward said the trooper explained he hadn’t told them about it because they had been through so much. The trooper believes the car hadn’t made a difference and they died after hitting the elk.
“We spoke to a witness who told us that our daughter was alive and she was performing CPR on her for 30 minutes with her boyfriend and he said, ‘Excuse me? What? You spoke with her?'” Edward said.
Edward says Stormie then got a call from that trooper, asking why she had reached out to the family in the first place. Edward says she told him it felt like she was being interrogated.
“This changes everything. At which point did they run over my daughter? Was that before Stormie performed CPR or after cause she was alive. It changes the entire situation,” Yvonne said.
Edward says he was told the oncoming car didn’t stop because they were staring into flashing high beams. OSP told him it was a car full of kids, who feared for their lives and kept driving to Gold Hill, before calling 911. It’s unclear if OSP interviewed the kids, but Edward was told because there was no criminal intent, there would be no autopsy.
“And I said, ‘Leaving the scene of an accident isn’t a criminal action?'” Edward said.
“For me it leaves the question wide open, could my daughter have survived?” Yvonne said.
The Angelettis say they’ve always supported law enforcement, but they want answers about their daughter’s death. As painful as it is to hear, they want closure.
“It’s just breaking our hearts that everything we have to hear about this is coming from everybody but the troopers,” Tiffany Ayala, Jennifer’s sister, said.
“Every time I said goodbye to any of the kids now, there’s a hug. I don’t care about COVID. There’s a hug and there’s a kiss and I am glad I ignored it and hugged her and kissed her the last time I saw her because I won’t ever get to do that again,” Yvonne said.
Jennifer and Mark were going to get married in May, but the wedding was postponed because of the pandemic. They leave behind five children.
We reached out to Oregon State Police Monday for comment about this story. It declined our request Tuesday. We’ve filled out a public records request, for more information about the accident.
Anna Weeks is a multimedia journalist for NBC5 News. She graduated Summa Cum Laude from Oregon State University with a degree in Digital Communication Arts and a minor in writing. Previously, she interned with the National Association of Broadcasters at the NAB Show in Las Vegas.
Originally from the Portland area, Anna is excited to explore Southern Oregon. In her free time, she can be found reading, running or watching sports.