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An eyewitness saw the vehicle race off Puerto Drive and crash into this home on Camino Del Lago Thursday afternoon. The driver was dead at the scene. (Click for larger image)

[Updated Jan. 4] Rancho Murieta Community Church on Friday invited members to a celebration of life for Joe Mazzoni Jr., who died in this crash. The service will be held 3 p.m. Jan. 13 at the Country Club. Church members were asked to pray for him and his family. The Mazzonis are one of Rancho Murieta's longtime, multi-generational families.

A vehicle flew across a sunken patio and crashed into the garage of a home on Camino Del Lago around 2 p.m. Thursday. Several hours later, the body of the driver, the vehicle’s only occupant, was removed to a coroner’s van. The CHP said the driver was a male resident of Rancho Murieta.

Next-door neighbor Logan Smith said he was preparing to cut his lawn when he saw the vehicle, which he described as a silver Acura SUV. “The car was going full speed down Puerto,” he said, and it didn’t slow as it ran across the lawn, over the wall of a sunken patio and “catapulted into the top of the home’s garage.” He estimated the car might have been doing 50 or 60 mph.

There were no signs of braking at the scene, where Puerto and Camino Del Lago meet in a “T.”

Smith said he called 911 and went into the garage to try to help the driver. He yelled but got no response, Smith said.

Neighbor Rene Mellegers said he was having lunch on the patio of his Playa Del Rey home, directly behind the accident scene, when he heard what sounded like an explosion. From his location, Mellegers said, he could see the accident had buckled the back wall of the garage.

The house was empty at the time, neighbors said. The homeowners returned a half-hour after the crash.

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