For the next 40 days, a Bay Area family will be praying for a loved one lost this week in a wrong-way crash on Interstate 80.
Zahid Arshad, 25, the driver of a Lexus that collided with a pickup truck traveling in the wrong direction near Madison Avenue, was buried Wednesday in line with Islamic traditions that call for a speedy burial. His family designates a time each day to pray, per Islamic custom.
“We’re trying to be strong,” sister Shabana Arshad said Thursday by phone. He is also survived by a younger brother and his parents. “It’s been a family of five for the last 25 years. Now, we’re a family of four.”
Zahid Arshad and a friend, Nicholas Sharma, 24, were traveling westbound on their way home to South San Francisco when they collided with the Ford F-150 pickup around 12:30 a.m. Tuesday.
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The driver of the pickup was identified on Thursday as Sergey Masalov, 42, of Roseville. Sacramento Superior Court records indicate Masalov pleaded no contest to driving under the influence in 1997.
The California Highway Patrol has not ruled out alcohol as a factor in Tuesday’s crash, pending toxicology reports that typically take a month to complete, said Officer Chad Hertzell, an agency spokesman.
Shabana Arshad, 27, described her brother as a “good kid” with a “heart of gold.”
Arshad was being groomed to take over the family’s auto body shop. He had a penchant for tinkering with cars and loved his black Lexus sedan.
“It was his baby,” said Shabana Arshad, a police dispatcher.
The family doesn’t know why Zahid Arshad was in Sacramento.
“You never expect it to be a loved one,” she said. “It’s just like this whole new ball game.”