The death of a Silver Springs Shores man dragged along a roadway while trying to fix a pickup truck that was attached to the tow truck he was driving has officially been ruled an accident, according to a Florida Highway Patrol report.
A Medical Examiner's Office report obtained by FHP Traffic Homicide Investigator Brett Detweiler states Brian "B" Marroquin's manner of death was accident. Marroquin's cause of death was listed as compressional asphyxia entrapment.
Marroquin was clean of drugs and alcohol, the report noted.
A husband and wife: Traffic ticket for Ocala driver in fatal crash
Detweiler, the trooper tasked with investigating the May 3 death, said in his report that Marroquin went underneath the tow truck to fix the shift linkage when the vehicle rolled forward while Marroquin was on the ground.
Marroquin was dragged approximately 28 feet. Marion County Fire Rescue officials arriving on scene put the tow truck in park because it was still in drive, Detweiler said in his report.
Troopers tested both the Ford F-350 pickup truck Marroquin was towing and the tow truck itself for any malfunctions. The vehicles were not damaged or defective. Marroquin had just repossessed the vehicle when the incident happened, officials said.
Marroquin's 9-year-old stepson was in the tow truck at the time of the accident.
Marroquin's future wife
Lisa Lyons, Marroquin's future wife, said her son is still grieving about his stepfather.
"He's struggling with the death. He still sleeps with me. I don't want to pressure him," Lyons said.
The little boy is not the only one trying to cope with Marroquin's untimely passing.
"It's hard. My life is not complete anymore," Lyons said.
Lyons said Thursday was the first time she has cooked dinner, Chinese, for the family since Marroquin's death. She said the family left Marroquin's chair open at the dinner table.
"Every day is a struggle. He's missed. The children try to cheer me up," she said.
The 38-year-old man lived with Lyons, who between them have six children: four boys and two girls, ages 9 to young adult.
She said the two knew each other when they lived in Naples. They moved to Marion County in 2016. The couple first lived with her mother before moving into their own home in 2021.
Lyons said Marroquin was a people person who was always happy, had a smile on his face and was a hard worker. He cherished her. Marroquin had proposed to Lyons a week before he died.
Marroquin worked for American Finance Adjusters, and a gofundme page – Fallen Fellow Towman, organized by Cinthia Flanders – has been created for the family because Marroquin was the provider for Lyons and the children.
Lyons said the fund is designed to assist her with paying bills and other necessities until she can get on her feet.
The goal is to raise $50,000. So far the page has 46 donors with $13,635 raised.
Russell Ansell, owner of American Finance Adjusters, said every day they talk about Marroquin, whom he described as the life of the company. He said Marroquin is looking down at them smiling.
"He has blessed us with work. If he was here, he'll be working non-stop," Ansell said.
From the gofundme page: "Brian loved towing and he was also a known DJ in Florida and traveled to do lots of charity events like Relay for Life."
The page also mentions that Marroquin "always talked about Lisa and the kids, they were his main focus and motivation. Please keep his family and friends in your prayers, he gave so much to the world."
Lyons said it's not the same without Marroquin and she misses his outgoing personality.
"If he was at home, he would be singing, dancing," she said.
Contact Austin L. Miller at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This article originally appeared on Ocala Star-Banner: Troopers rule tow truck driver's death accidental; family needs help