NORTH LAS VEGAS (KSNV MyNews3.com) --Mojave High School in North Las Vegas lost a basketball player early Sunday, and hundreds of teenagers mourned Sunday night outside the campus where Jahlonn Williams was killed in a car wreck.
Candles, teddy bears, and even a basketball were placed at the corner of Goldfield and Washburn near the high school campus. There were prayers and lots of tears and hugs as so many grieved over the loss of a young person with his whole life ahead of him.
Williams was driving a car early Sunday morning with his younger sister, 13 year old Dereonna Beard as passenger, when North Las Vegas police says another car driven by 18 year old Douglas Bruce slammed into the driver’s side of the car after running a stop sign. Williams’ sister was ejected from the car.
“You should be celebrating everything a mother has and as you follow and talk to kids that’s one of the first things they say, ‘Can you imagine on Mother’s day that a parent would have to go through something like this?' ” said Mojave High School Assistant Principal of Athletics, Greg Cole.
While Beard was rushed to the hospital in critical condition, police arrested Bruce on traffic related charges that could be upgraded to felonies. Officer Chrissie Coon says alcohol and speed are believed to be a factor.
“People need to realize speed kills. The faster you’re going in a crash, the more likely someone is going to get seriously injured or die,” Coon said.
Meanwhile a campus is mourning. Jahlonn Williams was well known. He was a guard on the Varsity Basketball team, got good grades, and was known as a leader.
“This is a tragedy that struck our school and our community and our basketball team and our hearts and our lives and there is no positive way to feel about it at this moment. You know if there is a silver lining somewhere in it, I’m sure it will come out but right now we just feel the pain from it,” said Mojave High School Varsity Basketball Coach Colin Darfour.
Grief counselors will be on hand Monday on campus.