"She was all about positivity and making people laugh," Brittanie Lynn Ritchie said of her fiancée, Rochelle Hager

By Joelle Goldstein
March 31, 2021 01:08 PM
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Rochelle Hager
Rochelle Hager
| Credit: Rochelle Hager/Instagram

Rochelle "Roe" Hager, the TikTok personality who was known for documenting her life and promoting LGBTQ equality, has died. She was 31.

Hager died on Monday after a pine tree smashed into the top of her SUV while she was driving in Farmington, Maine, the Farmington Police Department confirms to PEOPLE.

Hager's fiancée, Brittanie Lynn Ritchie, told CentralMaine.com. she was on the phone with Hager when the freak accident happened around 10 a.m.

"It happened really quick," Ritchie recalled to the outlet. "She has a phone mounted in her vent. I just heard a crash and then there was nothing. She didn't see the tree coming. It was instant."

Ritchie, 28 — who was set to marry Hager on Oct. 16, according to CentralMaine.com — later addressed the tragic incident on her TikTok.

Rochelle Hager
Rochelle "Roe" Hager
| Credit: Rochelle Hager/Instagram

"Thank you so much for your overwhelming support... A lot of you guys have been asking what happened and I wasn't ready to talk about it. It's still new," she said through tears. "But I did go and get her stuff out of the car today, so now that has happened. She was driving and we were having a windstorm and a tree fell on her car."

"She wasn't in pain," Ritchie added in the emotional clip. "She died instantly. I heard the crash and then there was nothing."

Prior to her tragic death, Hager worked as an executive chef at The Woodlands in Waterville, according to CentralMaine.com.

Hager and Ritchie met in June of last year through a mutual friend and were quick to fall in love, the outlet reported.

They later started documenting their relationship on TikTok, where Hager accumulated over 163,000 followers. In addition to sharing their love story on the popular video platform, Hager also participated in viral challenges, like tasting hot sauces and lip-syncing to songs.

"We had a following on TikTok, and she was all about positivity and making people laugh," Ritchie told CentralMaine.com. "She was that kind of person."

"She was a huge advocate for addiction and she survived it and was clean for over 10 years," Ritchie added. "When she got through that, she went to culinary school in Florida. She was amazing."

Hager's colleagues felt the same about her, telling CentralMaine.com that Hager was a genuine person who could light up a room with her infectious personality.

Benjamin Smith, The Woodlands' director of operations, told the outlet Hager was particularly special to the senior community, who live at the Woodlands in their Park Residences, and often went out of her way to meet their needs.

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"She did make such a huge impact on the lives of the residents she served," Smith said. "When you find someone like that, an employee that has that type of personality or aura, it makes a huge difference in the lives of the seniors we serve."

Mary Carpinito, the owner of Amici's Cucina restaurant in Waterville where Hager formerly worked as a chef, added to the outlet: "She was very nice, had a positive attitude, big smile always on her face... She was such a sweet, sweet person."

A celebration of life is currently being planned for Hager in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where her parents reside, according to CentralMaine.com

Another tribute may also be held in Florida, where Hager grew up and where many of her relatives and friends reside, Ritchie told the outlet.