Students gathered Sunday night to remember the lives of Brendan Shreve and Jared Duran.
Hundreds of local high school students gathered in the median of Lakewood Ranch Boulevard Sunday night, circling a tree just north of Clubhouse Drive, where less than 24 hours before Lakewood Ranch High School students Brendan Shreve and Jared Duran lost their lives in a one-vehicle crash.
The flashing blue lights of police cars broke the darkness, offering a sense of safety as students spilled into one lane of traffic. The chirping of crickets and slow whir of cars passing by were broken only by sobs of despair as students stood quietly, held hands and embraced in remembrance of their friends.
Shreve, 17, and Duran, 15, died around 5 a.m. Oct. 10 after the Mercedes Shreve was driving clipped the median, jumped the curve and crashed head on into the tree at which students gathered.
Although many who gathered for the candlelight vigil knew Shreve and Duran personally, many did not.
“It’s just a tragedy,” one girl said. “Even kids from other schools are here.”
Lucy Milbourn and Ali Alger, both 16, held each other in an embrace at the fringe of the circle. Although they didn’t know either Duran or Shreve well, they felt compelled to come.
“That’s my brother right there,” Ali said, pointing. “I can’t imagine having to go through this. We’re thinking of their families.”