GRAND PRAIRIE — Carlos Marquez Sr. clings to his surviving son as they stare at the scarred tree in the Highway 360 median where Carlos Jr. was killed late Saturday night.
He would have turned 16 on Monday.
The teen was in a luxury SUV with three Timberview High School classmates when the car went out of control and slammed into the tree.
The 17-year-old driver, Kim Pimental, was critically hurt in the crash; Flordeluna Flores, 15, Isaiah Rodriguez, 16, were also hospitalized.
"It was just so quiet walking in this morning," said Timberview student Emily Reyna. "Like nobody is really talking at all."
It's the second time in two weeks for Timberview students to experience death. On October 16, football and baseball coach Cody McCarty died suddenly.
"I'm just trying to deal with the anger and the stress," said Oscar Mezatovar, also a student. "This could happen to anyone in high school."
Police estimate the SUV in which the teens were riding was traveling 80 to 85 mph when it spun into the median and hit a tree. The accident happened about 11:30 Saturday night right across from the school.
Cameron Albertson is a close friend of the young driver. He stopped at the scene, where flowers and stuffed animals now form a roadside memorial. "Every time I pass by this spot now I think of her. It's sad," Albertson said. "You can see bits and pieces of the car everywhere. It's really so sad."
There will be a memorial service at Timberview before school pm Tuesday. District officials say it will be private, to give students and staff time to grieve and support each other.
Police don't suspect that alcohol played a role in the crash. They say the four students were coming back from an IHOP restaurant.
Earlier Saturday, all four teens were involved in the school play, "The American Clock," about hard times in the Great Depression.
Students at Timberview and the family of Carlos Marquez know more than they want to about hard times.