Rosita and Fernando Palacios Alonso of Bradenton, Florida were killed in a fatal car accident on Saturday, according to news reports. The accident critically injured four others: 21-year-old Efrian Reyes Jr. (the driver), 19-year-old Diego Aguilera, 17-year-old Ernesto Ramirez, and 16-year-old Keyhla Ibarra. The Florida Highway Patrol is reportedly working to determine the cause of the accident, as well as investigating the possibility of alcohol involvement in the collision. No criminal charges have yet been filed, and it remains to be seen whether any of the victims or the victims’ families are exploring the possibility of legal action.
According to press reports, the accident took place just after 4:00 a.m. on Saturday on Bishop Harbor Road in Manatee, Florida. It is not clear where the group was coming from or headed at the time. Sources indicate that none of the occupants of the 2004 Nissan Altima were wearing seatbelts at the time of the crash. At this time, investigators reportedly believe that Reyes lost control of his vehicle after taking a curve in the road too fast. The Nissan sped off the road, hitting a fence and multiple trees before coming to a stop.
The impact of the crash reportedly propelled the entire group out of the car, resulting in serious injuries for all. Reyes was transported to Blake Medical Center’s trauma unit; Ramirez, Ibarra, and Rosita Alonso were taken to Bayfront Medical Center; Aguilera was taken to Tampa General Hospital; and Fernando Alonso was transported to Manatee Memorial Hospital. All of the victims, save Rosita and Fernando Alonso, are reportedly in critical condition, and no updates on their conditions have been forthcoming.
The Alonso siblings were pronounced dead at their respective hospitals. Rosita Alonso, 16, had been attending Central High School in Bradenton, while Fernando, 13, was a student at King Middle School. The parents of the deceased, Fernando and Aurora Palacios Alonso, evidently played host to a large number of friends and family following the car crash, as loved ones from all over gathered to mourn the loss of the children.
“She was always smiling,” Rosita’s older sister said of her, explaining that Rosita had skipped from 7th to 9th grade because of her sharp mind. The teen had been planning on attending college and becoming a nurse, according to family members. Fernando Alonso was described as “shy” and “serious,” with dreams of becoming a rap artist.
Meanwhile, other parents are waiting for their critically injured teens to wake up. “She opens her eyes, wiggles her fingers, but she goes back into the coma. She hasn’t woken up completely,” Keyhla Ibarra’s mother purportedly told the press. The Central High student, who attended school with Rosita Alonso, has had five surgeries since the accident to address problems with her internal organs, such as her speen, liver, and intestines. On top of that, the teen reportedly suffered from a bad head wound. “She had a head injury and a piece of her skull was missing. The surgeons placed a tiny, eight-millimeter piece of metal over her brain,” her mother explained.