Candlelight vigil honors Palm Springs crash victims

Candlelight vigil honors Osvaldo Ramirez and Tierra Reagins at Palm Springs crash site

PALM SPRINGS, Calif. - With pink ribbons and flowers, loved ones tried to cover the dents and deep scrapes from Sunday's deadly crash.

More than 100 people gathered at the corner of Gene Autry Trail and Tachevah in Palm Springs to light candles and remember where the lives of 21-year-old Osvaldo Ramirez, of Cathedral City, and 18-year-old Tierra Reagins, of Palm Springs, were cut short.

"I just really miss her," said Tierra's 7-year-old niece, McKaela Reagins.

Osvaldo and Tierra were passengers in the back seat of a Cadillac. Police said the car's driver was speeding when he crashed into a light pole, splitting the car in two, killing Tierra and Osvaldo just after 3:30 a.m. Sunday.

"She always had a smile on her face. She didn't deserve this," said Tierra's friend Indigo Betts.

"I'll miss his smile, his happy go lucky spirit, always ready to jump into the fun," said Chris Dolan, Osvaldo's friend.

The driver survived and was hospitalized with major injuries. Another passenger named Maria, who was not seriously hurt in the crash, showed up to the vigil, according to Tierra's cousin Althea Edwards.
"I just gave her a big hug. For her to revisit the scene takes a lot of courage. It takes a lot of strength," said Edwards.

Loved ones said Tierra was the youngest of six, a Palm Springs High School and cosmetology school graduate and College of the Desert student.

"Tierra had two jobs. She was a hard worker. She was starting college today," said Edwards. "She was very ambitious and had a bright future ahead of her. We hate that this tragedy had to happen."

Osvaldo went to Cathedral City High School and leaves behind two sons and his wife.

"It's just very devastating," said Dolan.

Police said alcohol may have been a factor, but would not confirm. The driver could face DUI charges and jail time after he's released from the hospital.

"It's just horrific the way it ended. We have to stay strong to get through this," said Edwards.

Both families have planned fundraiser to help pay for funeral costs.

Tierra's family will host a car wash Saturday, Sept. 6 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the Sunny Dunes Starbucks Downtown Palm Springs, where Tierra worked.

Osvaldo's family will host a car wash Friday and Saturday at the corner of Desert Vista and Ramon Road in Cathedral City starting at 8 a.m.

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