Florida teenagers die after they were struck by a bus while celebrating high school graduation in Peru
The two graduates, Albert Ales and Zachary Morris, were from the Southeast High School in Bradenton and had graduated on May 18 before they had headed out on the much awaited senior vacation
Florida Teens Die in 'Tragic Accident' While Celebrating Their High School Graduation in Peru
A celebratory trip which was supposed to be a milestone memory turned into a tragedy when two Florida High school graduates were killed on Friday, May 24, in an accident while exploring Peru, according to officials.
The 18-year-old victims, Albert Ales and Zachary Morris, died several hours after arriving in the country when they were struck by a bus while riding a motorcycle in the city of Cusco. The two graduates were from the Southeast High School in Bradenton and had graduated on May 18 before they had headed out on the much awaited senior vacation.
According to Peruvian newspaper La Republica, the teenagers had been struck by the bus and were thrown off the motorcycle. The driver of the bus was detained later by authorities. Both Ales and Morris had graduated from the school's International Baccalaureate program.
The school took to Twitter on Saturday, May 25, to share, "Our Southeast Community is heartbroken after hearing the unimaginable news that recent IB graduates Albert Ales and Zachary Morris passed away yesterday in a tragic accident while exploring Peru. Our thoughts and prayers are centered around their family and friends." The applied engineering teacher at Southeast High School Richard Platt shared with Fox 13 that the two students had made a huge impact on the school community.
Platt shared on Sunday, May 26, "They were bigger than life. They were the kind of kids that made everyone feel better when they were around." Platt also added that Morris and Ales were involved in the engineering and entrepreneurship program. The club had built a machine which can make a thousand wooden toys every month which were then given to the 101st Airborne Division who hand it out to children they meet in places like Afghanistan or other deployments.
He added, "When you have two students that made such an impact on our community and such an impact on our school, and they completely change the direction of where I teach engineering now and where I'm going with it until I retire, it's completely devastating."
Friends and family of the teenagers were devastated. Anthony Sevarino shared, "You see stuff like this in the news, so it's really hard when this happens to you, it's not easy. Albert was the guy that if you had a problem, he was going to fix it. And Zach was just the smartest guy you've ever seen, so confident in his speaking. Both of them are really the reason I am molded into the person I am today."
The school asked students to honor the teens by wearing the color orange or a Hawaiian shirt. "Even if you didn't have the pleasure of knowing them or getting close to them, it would mean a lot to their friends in the graduated class and those still students at SEHS to show the love and support. In the meantime, please just try and think of all the good and memories of those two boys living their lives to the fullest," the school said in a statement.
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