Oregon community holds vigil for football players in deadly crash

Oregon community holds vigil for football players in deadly crash
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A community united at a Beaverton high school Friday to grieve and find solace following a horrific crash.

The crash occurred Thursday afternoon near Molalla and involved two Southridge High School students. One of the students died and another suffered life-threatening injuries.

Friends, family members and students gathered Friday night to share messages of hope for Tyler Bracken, 18, who was air-lifted to OHSU after the crash with life-threatening injuries. They also honored Eric “EJ” Santos, also 18, who was pronounced dead at the scene after life-saving measures were unsuccessful.

According to law enforcement, Bracken, the driver, was attempting to pass several cars on Highway 211 Thursday on a blind corner when his car and a pickup collided. The other driver involved in the crash was not hurt.

Students and graduates met at Southridge Friday, sharing hugs and tears. They say they will always remember EJ’s smile.

“Anytime I saw EJ or Tyler, they put a smile on everybody’s face, they always lit up the room because they always had a positive attitude, and they always had a positive vibe to them,” Hayk Bulgadarian, a graduate, said.

In its Facebook page Friday that counselors will be available Monday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. for students, friends and staff members.