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Man Killed On I-10 In Cathedral City Identified

CATHEDRAL CITY-A man who died in a two-vehicle rollover crash on Interstate 10 near Cathedral City was identified today as a 36-year-old jazz pianist from Los Angeles.

Derrick Raymond Finch was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash, which was reported at 4:21 p.m. Tuesday on the eastbound freeway near Date Palm Drive.

Finch, who was driving a red 1995 Isuzu Rodeo, apparently changed lanes and struck a red 2004 Honda Santa Fe, causing both motorists to lose control of their vehicles, both of which overturned, said Officer Ramon Perez of the California Highway Patrol.

Finch was thrown from his SUV, even though it appeared he was wearing a seat belt, Perez said.

“Due to the violence of the collision, he was ejected,” Perez said.

Rhonda Kay Balck, 48, of La Quinta, was taken to Desert Regional Medical Center in Palm Springs for treatment of major injuries, he said.

A hospital official said he could not release her condition.

Finch, who received his doctorate in jazz studies from USC in 2008, was born in Pittsburgh and began playing piano at age 3, according to his MySpace page and other Web sites.

KESQ News Team

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