VENTURA COUNTY -- Famed plastic surgeon, Dr. Frank Ryan, was texting while driving moments before he was killed in a crash along Pacific Coast Highway, according to his ex-girlfriend.
Charmaine Blake told People magazine that Ryan was sending out a Twitter message about his border collie, Jill, just before his crash.
"He lived up in Malibu on a tiny street, and he was texting while driving, and he accidentally went over the cliff," she told the magazine.
A California Highway Patrol spokesperson confirms Ryan was texting before the crash, but investigators have not yet determined the official cause of the accident.
Ryan's last twitter post reads, "After 25 years of driving by, I finally hiked to the top of the giant sand dune on the [Pacific Coast Highway] west of Malibu. Much harder than it looks! Whew!" That missive was followed by a photo of Jill looking out at the Pacific Ocean with the caption, "Border collie jill surveying the view from atop the sand dune."
The dog, Jill, was ejected from the car, but survived, sustaining head, eye and paw injuries.
His Jeep Wrangler went off PCH at Deer Creek Rd. in Ventura County around 4:30 p.m. Monday and landed on a rocky embankment, according to Ventura County Fire Capt. Ron Oatman.
State lifeguards who were traveling in the opposite direction found Dr. Ryan suffering from a head injury and rendered aid until fire paramedics arrived.
Dr. Ryan, 50, was pronounced dead a short time later, Oatman said.
Meantime, several dozen friends and celebrities gathered near Zuma Beach Tuesday to hold a candlelight vigil in Dr. Ryan's honor.
Model-actress Janice Dickinson shared a few words.
"He fixed not only people but he fixed them from the inside out," Dickinson said. "He was my friend. He was our friend and we will miss him."
TV host Melissa Rivers was also in attendance.
Dr. Ryan recently gained attention for Heidi Montag's extreme makeover.
Montag wrote on Twitter that Ryan was "the most brilliant talented surgeon who will ever exist."
His other celebrity clients included Gene Simmons, Shauna Sand, Vince Neil, Lorenzo Lamas and Adrianne Curry.Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times