The father and daughter were transported to County-USC Medical Center, where Salvador Soria Ramirez died shortly after arrival. Veronica Ramirez was listed in stable condition.
Police have not determined which party was at fault for the accident, but are calling on the community to come forward if they have any details about the incident to help them locate the driver.
"We're not saying who is at fault right now, but if you leave the scene when someone is injured, it's a felony," Gunnell said.
Witnesses described a compact vehicle — possibly a Honda, Mazda, Hyundai or Saturn — with a dark blue-green metallic color, Glendale Police Officer John Balian said.
The front bumper and passenger side of the vehicle would have sustained some damage from the collision, he said.
There was no doubt the driver knew there was an accident, Gunnell said. One witness said the vehicle stopped about a half-mile away from the accident, and looked back at the scene before taking off, he said. Police did not have a description of the driver.
"It's not so much about the collision; it's that [the family] lost a grandfather and father 20 days before Christmas," Gunnell said.
Veronica Ramirez was reported to have regained consciousness by Tuesday, Balian said.
When the oncoming driver hit the car, Veronica Ramirez was thrown into a tree, knocking her unconscious. Salvador Ramirez lay pinned between the car and the curb until emergency vehicles arrived.
Veronica Ramirez's mother-in-law, Berta Narvaz, said it was tragic that the incident happened so close to the holidays.
"She is like a daughter to me," Narvaz said of Veronica Ramirez. "Her father was a very good person."
The incident was a first for New Horizons, though Director Maria Rochart notes that Glendale Avenue is a very busy street.
"It was the most tragic thing," she said. "In a minute, everything is fine and the next minute things change for the rest of their lives."
She called on the driver or anyone with information to come to the police so that the case can be resolved.
"Whoever did this has to have a conscience," she said. "Now there are four kids left without a grandfather."
Anyone with information on the incident can call (818) 507-7867 or Gunnell at (818) 548-3130.
ROBERT S. HONG covers public safety and the courts. He may be reached at (818) 637-3235 or by e-mail at robert.honglatimes.com.