‘We're Hurting': Community Mourns Teen Killed in Southwest Miami-Dade Crash

A community held a church memorial on Sunday after a 16-year-old who is the son of a University of Miami baseball coach died in a Miami-Dade car crash.

According to Florida Highway Patrol, a car was traveling southbound on Galloway Road at Southwest 87th Avenue at about 9:45 p.m. when the car hit a concrete median curb. That's when the car lost control, and then struck a chain link fence and a concrete utility pole.

The driver, Ari Julian Arteaga, 16, was pronounced dead on the scene. The car's passenger, Indira Rambarran, also 16, was transported to the hospital where she remained in serious condition Monday.

Rambarran is a volleyball player at Lady of Lourdes Academy.

"We ask our school community to pray for rising junior Indira Rambarran, who is hospitalized following a fatal car accident that took the life of Ari Arteaga from Christopher Columbus High School, last night," the high school said in a statement. "Our thoughts and prayers are with the Rambarran and Arteaga families, as well as our brothers at Columbus."

Arteaga was a football and baseball player, described as "very respectful" by his football coach, Chris Merritt.

"A fine, dedicated athlete – and we're hurting right now," Merritt told NBC 6.

The vehicle in which the two were traveling in was so badly damaged in the crash, crews had to use the "Jaws of Life" tool to remove the teens from the vehicle.

"I'm always encouraging parents to think about their kids, I brought mine out here to learn about the consequences of being out here so late at night in your car and what could happen if you're out here. I feel for the parents, condolences go out to them and hopefully, we'll learn from this tragedy so we save others lives," said Frank Fernandez, a witness.

Florida Highway Patrol said the two were wearing their seatbelts and it appears that alcohol and drugs were not a factor in the crash.

The University of Miami confirmed that Arteaga is the son of J.D. Arteaga, the assistant baseball coach at the school.

"Our hearts are broken over the loss of Ari and our thoughts and prayers are with J.D., Ysha and Ariana," said Blake James, the Director of Athletics for the University of Miami. "I know that the Miami family will be there for them always and that Ari will forever be remembered for his kindness and bright smile."

Counselors, coaches, administrators gathered together Sunday where they spoke to students of the university by allowing them to express their condolences.

"We are all mourning the loss of Ari and are thinking of J.D., Ysha, and Ariana during this difficult time. Ari was a bright young man who brought joy to so many who knew him and he will be missed by all of us in the Miami baseball family," said Gino DiMare, the head baseball coach for the University of Miami.

A GoFundMe page set up for Rambarran's medical costs has raised almost $130,000 as of Monday night, surpassing the $125,000 goal.

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