Last Updated: Tuesday, 8:58 p.m.
The medical examiner today confirmed that the body found in a car that had sunk in a pond off Matanzas Woods Parkway is that of Erica Bergeron, a Palm Coast resident who had gone missing on April 20. The car, a rental, was pulled out of the pond on Monday evening.
The confirmation was not a surprise to authorities, who by then had confirmed that the car was the rental Bergeron had rented, and was captured driving in the area by a license plate reader shortly before electronic contact was lost with the car. It is not known why Bergeron drove off the road, though she was known to have health issues.
The Flagler County Sheriff’s Office posted a terse update to the missing-person search on its Facebook page around 8 p.m. this evening. “Sheriff Staly and FCSO extend our deepest condolences to the Bergeron family,” it stated.
One of Bergeron’s friends was the last to communicate by text with her on April 19, when she wrote ion good spirits of going out.
The previous accounts are below.
Erica Bergeron, Missing Since Thursday, Feared Lost as Car Is Traced to Pond Off Matanzas Woods Parkway
April 24–The Flagler County Sheriff’s Office late this afternoon announced that the car that Erica Bergeron, a Palm Coast resident missing since April 20, was found submerged and pulled from a pond off Matanzas Woods Parkway, with a body inside.
While the Sheriff’s Office did not confirm that it was Bergeron, pending the medical examiner’s identification, of the body, the statement it released makes it almost certain that it is: “A vehicle has been located and removed from the pond with one deceased occupant inside. While positive ID on the occupant has not been made, the vehicle is the same vehicle that missing person Erica Bergeron was believed to be traveling in when she was reported missing.”
The circumstances surrounding her disappearance and the few traces she left behind, including some communications with friends and the vehicle’s own tracked trajectory and the time of its disappearance, all add to the likelihood that she was driving it, as would the clothes she was wearing.
Bergeron, 49, a long-time resident of Palm Coast, had recently moved into her home on Lindsay Drive. On Sunday morning, her mother called the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office to report that she hadn’t heard from her in three days, and that Bergeron had some health issues.
Deputies and the fire department forced entry into the house, finding no one there, no car in the driveway, and hearing from a friend of Bergeron’s who also spoke of not hearing from her for days. The last sighting of her was on April 20 at Palm Coast Lanes, the bowling alley at 11 N Old Kings Road.
This morning, the Sheriff’s Office issued an advisory, calling on media and the public to help locate Bergeron or her gray 2021 Toyota Camry, license plate JBGR52, an Enterprise rental vehicle Bergeron may have been be driving.
Authorities checked all area hospitals and numerous other locations, including parks, churches and hotels and motels, clubs, shopping centers and other locations, some in St. Johns and Volusia counties, with negative results. Flagler County Fire Flight, the emergency helicopter, circled the F-Section, looking for the gray vehicle.
Authorities also checked license plate readers, which last picked out the Toyota on Matanzas Woods Parkway. It isn’t clear whether the rental agency was able to provide a geolocation for where the car was last located.
But it was that, or similar information, that led the Sheriff’s Office’s dive team to a submerged car in a pond at Matanzas Woods Parkway and Palm Harbor Parkway today, and to a sheriff’s advisory that a heavy law enforcement presence was in that area.
“The rental car was tracked to the area, so that’s why we’re searching this pond,” a sheriff’s spokesperson said around 1:20 p.m., as a dive team was getting ready to go into the water. The vehicle was last tracked there on Friday. It was fully submerged. The Florida Highway Patrol’s traffic homicide investigators were also contacted.
Bergeron is listed as a hearing instrument specialist at a Florida Medical Hearing Center at Island Walk in Palm Coast. She is described as white, standing 5’9″ and weighing approximately 165 pounds, with blonde hair and blue eyes. She was last seen wearing a gold or tan sleeveless top and jeans, as seen in surveillance footage from outside the bowling alley. If you see Erica or know her location, please contact the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office at 386-313-4911 regarding case 23-38233.
[This is a developing story.]
The only Pond that could be is the triangle shaped pond at Cris Ln & Creek Course Dr Across from Sabal Palm Assisted Living on Palm harbor Parkway, Seems odd if she were driving home from the Bowling Alley Thursday night she would need to make a Left at the T at the end of Old Kings to get to her home on Lindsay Pl. From curve in the road looks like she was coming from the C section and missed the left curve to get into that pond… I bet she Maybe took Frontier to the end to get gas or munchies at the Circle K Shell then headed left on Palm Harbor DR, its straight as an arrow until that left curve and pond. Might want to check their surveillance cameras at the Circle K on frontier…
Pat Stote says
Praying she turns up safel🙏🙏🙏
She’s a long time resident of Palm Coast but was diriving a rental car?
Yes she’s a long time resident and was driving a rental car. What do you find odd about that. Never had your car in the shop but still needed to get around.
Is that really what you took away from this article? And can someone from palm coast not drive a rental car in palm coast?
Could be an insurance rental or something. Maybe her primary vehicle was in the shop.
Janet R Fonseca says
I love Erica, hoping she is found safe.
Patricia Rose says
Praying for her family and friends
Prayers for her….
Apparently the Flagler County’s dive team has located the car fully submerged in the pond with a body inside. However they haven’t confirmed that it was Erica.
A lot of people driving into ponds in Palm Coast. A 40 year old man drove into a pond recently at pal coast parkway 95. Last year an old woman drove into a pond and died. Sad situations.
Fernando Melendez says
Our prayers go out to her family and friends 🙏
Celia Pugliese says
We need barriers in these ponds at least on their side close to traffic…whether are the retention ponds along I-95 or any other retention pond.. same barriers needed at the end of the canals close to the streets We had a man drowned off a Clubhouse Drive end of the saltwater canal and Casper Dr.. We need barriers at least in the ones almost ending in a T like the one at the end of Casper in Clubhouse Drive or the ones to close to traffic like in Florida Park Drive the Fern Court Canal. This should be a request made and funded by FDOT ( justified by too many deaths already) at least for the retention ponds close to I-95 also grants from FDOT for the others. As I hear regarding the taxes the state share with the counties and cities that we contribute to the state they are reducing every year what the state shares with the schools (has they fund private educations now) cities and counties…that has to stop as the fair share is needed from the state. Otherwise DiSatan waste our hard earned taxes helping Texas to get rid of immigrants chartering them from TX to Martha’s Vineyards at multimillions cost on our pockets! Each state should resolve their own problems. Otherwise we all become Floriduh’s if we (b/o) aka accept it!
Erica’s children lost their mother, many of us lost a friend, and the many others that loved her are devasted as well. Your hateful political comments have no place here!
It seems this happens frequently in the retention ponds around here..
….why aren’t there guard rails??????
I thought they were required at the end of the street?
That’s a nice picture of her. I guess that they’ll examine her remains and find
a possible cause for her untimely death.
You’d be surprised at all the conditions that can make a person lose consciousness,
if only for a second—that’s ample time to lose control of a car.
My sympathies to those who loved her.
Every day of life is a day where death is dodged.
The present-day really is a “present.”
We are such fragile creatures.
Why not do a good deed today for someone in Ms. Bergeron’s memory?
RIP thoughts and prayers to her family and friends. Gone to soon.
My Opinion: Spending to attract more people for growth has been for a long time more important than protecting the residents that fund the city government’s goals. We are the stupid ones, keep voting those that want growth over protecting residents. Do you really think more traffic in Palm Coast is going to fix a government that doesn’t care about its residents? You’ll answer that the next election.
Someone should look into why the person who called in on Thursday about car marks going into this pond were ignored. She was there telling me about it while we waited for them to pull her out.
I spoke to her too at the scene. Said she alerted law inforcement on Thursday morning of what she found while walking her dog at 6 in the morning. Someone dropped the ball. This was Thursday. Why did it take so long to check the pond?
Debra Davies says
Erica was a beautiful and spirited soul. I will miss her laugh and great sense of humor. Her son has lost his Mom- friend and supporter. Her family lost her too. Stop with the politics and pray for peace for her family and strength for her son. Rest In Peace my friend. Love you