WEST HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH)-- A young life cut short in a car crash while two teenagers remain hospitalized. It has been a very sad few days for students, parents, and teachers in West Haven.
That crash happened in Orange on Friday, in the area of Indian River Road near Heron Drive.
Close friends of the three girls who were in the car with AJ Cedillo say he was on his way to a job interview at the mall when he crashed into a utility pole. Counselors were on hand Monday at the high school and the middle school.
While police say Cedillo did pass away, students were told by administrators that AJ is still on life support, but the hospital declares him brain dead.
Assistant Chief Anthony Cuozzo of the Orange Police Department said "we were advised by the hospital that he was declared dead on Saturday evening. The family was deciding on organ donation which may have required limited life support while those very difficult choices are made. We anticipate that the remaining youths who are hospitalized to have a long road to recovery."
A video clip of a 13-year-old girl in a hospital bed recovering from a tragic car crash is tough for Wendi Cardamone to look at and share.
"Knowing her and knowing that she's going through this, I'm grateful she's alive," said Cardamone.
Her 14-year-old daughter, Jamie, is friends with all three of these teenage girl who were passengers in 18-year-old AJ Cedillo's car.
"I'm glad that she had cheerleading that day. She had a football game to cheer for so she wasn't with them," said Cardamone. "When I heard about the whole thing, it just brought me to tears, like how could something like this happen."
While Jamie doesn't know AJ well, she says she's almost always with 15-year-old Bobbi.
"She has stitches in her hand and has lung problems because she got pressure on her lungs," said Jamie Cardamone.
Bobbi has since been released from the hospital.
Courtney is still in the hospital, as well as Ashley.
Police say around 3:45 Friday afternoon, AJ Cedillo was driving a black Subaru traveling west on Indian River Road in Orange when he lost control and crashed into a utility pole.
The Cardamone's say the pictures of the car were terrifying as if the pole went straight through the car towards Cedillo.
The mother and daughter have since had a heart to heart about how dangerous the roads can be and how important is to pay attention when behind the wheel.
"We had distractions. There's so many more nowadays," said Cardamone.
While police have given few details about the cause of the crash, the Cardamone's say it's just tough to take that the recent 18 year-old West Haven high school grad was on his way to a job interview.
"I can't imagine what AJ's family is going through," said Cardamone.
Whether students knew AJ or not, many of them can't stop staring at his quote in the 2013 high school yearbook.."Always remember to live while you're young because you only have one life."
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