PROVO Aside from the youthful misspellings, it's hard to miss the pure love and friendship shown by classmates of two children who were killed in Sunday's accident in Provo Canyon.
"Daniel was realy realy nice and he made new fends evry day and we are realy realy sad that he died because he was a vary good prson and we miss Daniel vary much," wrote Megan, a first-grade student at Farrer Elementary in Provo.
Daniel Lopez, 7, and his big sister, Jennifer Lopez, 8, were killed Sunday evening on U.S. 189 when the red car they were riding in turned left out of Vivian Park and was broadsided by an eastbound truck.
They were first- and third-
graders, respectively, at Farrer Elementary. This week, the flag has been at half-staff in honor of the children and their family, said Farrer Principal Don Dowdle.
Grief counselors have also been in the classrooms, talking with students about why they might feel mad or sad, with students being reassured that it's OK to cry, Dowdle said. Tuesday, students and teachers wrote down memories about their friends and pupils.
"Jennifer was a sweet girl who could light up a room with her big, beautiful smile," wrote third-grade teacher Deborah Burt. "All of her classmates would agree with me when I say that she was a good friend to everyone. She was a very easy-going girl, who brought a sense of peace to any situation she was in. We were blessed to have met her. She will be missed very much by the teachers and students here at Farrer Elementary."
The two children were not wearing their seat belts and were ejected from the car. They died at the scene.
A fund is being set up in the children's names at Washington Mutual at 310 N. University, Suite 100 in Provo, or any branch, to help with funeral expenses.
The children's mother and driver of the red car, Maria Ruiz, was taken to University Hospital via medical helicopter that night with serious injuries but has since been released.
"Dear Daniel's parents, I just want you to now that Daniel was my friend," wrote Nathan.
Alex told Daniel's parents that their son was nice. "Miss Crane loves Daniel and so do we," he said. "I love Daniel and you to."
Other students thanked Daniel for helping them read or for playing tag with them. Some remembered him for being funny and cool.
"He was a big friend," another Alex wrote. "He was a big man. I love him."
Jennifer even called him the "gratst ked" (greatest kid) in the whole school.
"Dear Daniel. You have bin a gud frend to los of peeol... I hop that you go to hevin and you make riley gud dishins (decisions) and wen i go to hevin if i can, if i can not then i will stil mis you allot. i will try my best to go with you and all the other peepl. From Erika."
But perhaps young Torin summed up David best with the short phrase:"You wer a great friend to all (of) us."
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