Bridgerton Author Says Drunk Driver Killed Her Father, Sister

'I have lost my father, and I don't have my sister with whom to grieve,' Julia Quinn says
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 9, 2021 3:20 AM CDT

(Newser) – "I have lost my father, and I don't have my sister with whom to grieve," Bridgerton author Julia Quinn said in a Facebook post Wednesday night. She said father Steve Cotler, 77, and sister Ariana Cotler, 37, were killed in a crash involving a drunk driver in Utah, People reports. They died "because a catering company did not secure their load and canvas bags spilled onto the highway," she wrote. "Because a pickup driver thought nothing of driving while his blood alcohol level was nearly 3 times the legal limit." Authorities say a Ford F-250 crashed into the Toyota Prius driven by Steve Cotler after the Prius and another vehicle stopped because of the debris.

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The Utah Highway Patrol said the pickup driver was arrested for DUI after the June 29 crash on I-15 in Kaysville. Steve Cotler was also an author, best known for the Cheesie Mack series for middle-school readers, while Ariana Cotler, also known as Violet Charles, was a cartoonist, USA Today reports. Quinn, 51, whose novel series became a hit Netflix show, said she had just finished writing a graphic novel with her younger sister. "It was dedicated to our father," she wrote on Facebook. "It will still be dedicated to our father. It won't be a surprise anymore, but I'd like to think he suspected we'd do it. He knew us so well. He was our dad." (Read more Bridgerton stories.)

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