DUBLIN, Calif. (KTVU) - Grief counselors will be on campus at Dublin High School when classes resume session Jan. 7th after a tragic Christmas night crash took the lives of 16-year-old twin boys and their friend in Pleasanton.
Upwards of 500 people are expected to show up Sunday to honor their lives and organizers hope their peers may find some comfort by mourning together.
Ruth Cunniffe is helping organize the vigil. She said, “Well when we heard about the accident and that the three students were from Dublin High, from the class of 2022, which is my daughter’s class, the community wanted to come together to do something for the family.”
She said the news was tough even for her to accept.
“I can’t tell you that when I got the text and my daughter confirmed that they’d passed away, that it didn’t affect me," she stated. "I went back and told my husband and like I just started crying."
Twins Michael Angelo and Mark Anthony Urista, 16, both died on the scene along with their friend Javier Ramirez, also 16, after the car they were in lost control, hitting a utility pole and then a tree on Foothill Road just before Castlewood Drive.
The twins’ cousin Jared Reynoso is now in an induced coma in critical condition after being ejected from the vehicle. Friend Samantha Vargas Arceo also ejected from the vehicle remains hospitalized as well.
Abraham Alonzo has known the twins' mother Ana for decades and had last seen them just a few months ago.
“You just felt special to be around them. They just had this way of making you feel special,” he said.
He said Ana knew just how much the boys cared about their friends. Alonzo went on to say, “That’s what the boys were all about, their friends. If they had made it out of this ok, they would be worried about their friends and family being taken care of.”
In fact, he said that’s why they went out that fateful night.
“They said, ‘Hey mom, one of our friends is having a hard time with Christmas with their family,' so she let them go so they could go and console her and be with her and you know. They didn’t come back.”
The vigil will be held from 5-6 p.m. on Sunday in the quad of the school.
Those planning to attend the vigil can bring a picture of the boys and a candle. There will be several speakers including the principal, other school staff and the priest from the church where Javier and the Urista brothers attended with their families.
Cunniffe’s biggest hope is that the teens who show up will be able to share how they’re feeling at this tragic time.
“Bringing them together we’ll be able to give them the opportunity to kind of just open up and talk about what they meant to each other, how it feels now and what to expect in the next few weeks especially when school starts again.”
There is a GoFundMe page set up to help the family of Michael Angelo and Mark Anthony Urista .