Three Florida teenagers fatally struck by SUV while waiting for a bus to their football tourney
Gedeon Desir, 13, Lens Desir, 15, and Richecarde Dumay, 17, were part of the Little Haiti Football Club, a nonprofit that helps less fortunate children with athletic talent.
Three Florida teenagers lost their lives after they were struck by an SUV on Saturday as they were waiting for their bus to a soccer tournament.
At around 5.22 am Saturday in North Miami, Gedeon Desir, 13, Lens Desir, 15, and Richecarde Dumay, 17, were on the sidewalk when they were fatally struck by a speeding vehicle, Daily Mail reports.
The three boys, none of whom were related, were part of the Little Haiti Football Club, a nonprofit that helps less fortunate children with athletic talent.
On the fateful morning, Gedeon, Richecarde, and Lens were donning their uniforms for the Enigma Tournament in Weston.
Meanwhile, the driver, whose identity is yet to be released somehow survived the crash and was taken to hospital in critical condition.
That said, it remains unclear if alcohol was involved as the cause for the crash is yet to be established.
Speaking to the Sun-Sentinel, investigators said they are trying to determine if the driver will face charges and are "going through the proper protocol" for the same.
They said the teenagers were already dead when dispatch received a call reporting the crash at Northeast 13th Avenue and 125th Street - right their regular pickup spot.
"They were pedestrians on a sidewalk. They died on impact," a police spokeswoman said.
The coaches were heartbroken when the bus arrived in Weston without the three teens.
Speaking to the Miami Herald, Pat Santangelo, a director at the non-profit, said, "Eventually somebody answered one of the phones, a police officer, but they didn't give the coaches any information."
According to him, team members or even other teams were not notified about the crash during the tournament. Instead, they were taken back to Little Haiti Soccer Park after the event and "greeted by grief counselors."
Speaking of their free program, Santangelo said many of the 100 children under their wing were either undocumented, homeless, or hailed from low-income families.
"This team helps kids like these go from hopelessness to having a goal to work towards," he said. "A lot of these kids come from nothing. They're beyond high-risk."
The low-budget organization is helped by private donors and local businesses to pay for uniforms and other expenses. That said, several players at the Little Haiti Football Club earn scholarships to universities out of state.
"The kids that died today had promise," said Santangelo. "There was nothing but hope in front of them. Now it's all gone."
An online fundraising campaign has since raised more than $43,000 to help with the teens' funeral expenses and the non-profit's future.