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Teen misses trip, as 5 friends die in crash

california speeding car crash memorial day

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#1 Hum

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 15:53

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. (AP) — Tamer Mosallam was supposed to get picked up on Memorial Day for a trip to the beach with friends, but his father had other ideas and the carload of teens left him behind.

It would be the last time the 17-year-old would see his friends alive. The five teens — two boys and three girls — died late Monday afternoon in a fiery wreck that left the car they were riding in split in two and engulfed in flames. Among the victims were two of Mosallam's closest friends and a pair of sisters who had performed in a high school dance extravaganza over the holiday weekend.

"I was supposed to be with them in the car, that's why there were three girls," Mosallam said, explaining that he was to have been the third boy for a three-way double date. "They came to my house but my dad wouldn't let me go out because I was studying for a test."

A visibly shaken Mosallam and several dozen other students from Irvine Unified School District, where all the victims were enrolled, gathered outside Irvine High School on Tuesday to try to make sense of the tragedy.

Police said speed was a factor in the single-car wreck on a busy, six-lane surface street and the investigation was ongoing.

The driver was identified as 17-year-old Abdulrahman Alyahyan, a senior at University High School.

The passengers included 17-year-old Robin Cabrera, a senior at Irvine High, and her 16-year-old sister Aurora, a sophomore at the same school.

Also killed in the Monday crash were Cecilia Zamora and Nozad Al Hamawendi, both 17-year-old juniors at Irvine High.

Friends who gathered Tuesday outside Irvine High said the five were headed to the beach for a fun Memorial Day when the tragedy unfolded on a busy thoroughfare that connects Orange County's interior network of freeways with the famed Pacific Coast Highway and its beaches.

Authorities said the wreck was one of the worst in Newport Beach in recent memory and left two of the victims' bodies so damaged the coroner had to rely on fingerprints to identify them. The car hit a tree in the median, shearing it of its bark and leaving deep gouges in the trunk.

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#2 chrisj1968

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 15:57

geez. not good. young in-experienced drivers and speed... my heart goes out to the families

#3 FloatingFatMan

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 16:04

Such a tragic waste. :( And one lucky kid!

#4 Original Poster

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 16:16

who says it would not have been different if he was there? a single second delay or advantage can mean everything ... 1 second later and they may have been caught behind lights and missed the accident happening all together ... who knows...

#5 chrisj1968

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 16:20

who says it would not have been different if he was there? a single second delay or advantage can mean everything ... 1 second later and they may have been caught behind lights and missed the accident happening all together ... who knows...


can you imagine all the "what ifs?" if we were involved? I'd be utterly stunned

#6 Geoffrey B.

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 16:25

something similar to this happened a while back at the school I went to, A friend of mine decided not to go with her friends over to the lake, and none of them came back, they were in an accident and all died. she feels guilty about it to this day. She thinks that if she had gone it would not have happened.

#7 Original Poster

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 16:28

can you imagine all the "what ifs?" if we were involved? I'd be utterly stunned


I know its baffling but sadly with all the what ifs it would have been less likly for the accident to happen with 1 extra (or less ) person not to say that a complete different accident wouldn't have happened

#8 Growled

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 16:29

He should get up every morning thankful that he is alive.

#9 +WildWayz

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 16:37

Agreed. Although he didn't die, his life will be so messed up. I couldn't imagine how I would deal with it. I know what I was like when something happened to someone I know and the "what ifs" hit you like a brick to the face. Even though I knew I couldn't change things it still made me feel like I had failed her and that sent me into depression etc

#10 spacer

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 16:49

That kid better watch his back.

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#11 +timster

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 17:13

too soon?

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#12 +techbeck

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 17:25

Sounds like something out of a movie....forget which movie it was but at the beginning kids got off a plane and later it blew up.

Sad non the less. Inexperienced drivers and driving to fast...nothing is that important that you need to be there a few min early. What is funny, I normally got 5 - 10 over the speed limit but not in town. I see people passing me going way faster and a few miles down the road, they are stopped because of a slow vehicle and i end up catching up to them. Does pay to be in a hurry. Relax, put on some good music and enjoy the drive.