Students, friends and families in three communities are mourning the loss of three young men killed in a car accident Sunday with vigils and by recalling the fond memories they shared.
State police confirmed today that Taahir Harris, 19, a Southington High School graduate, Kerion Rogers, 20, a Bristol Eastern High School graduate, and Moses Negron, 18, a New Britain High School junior, were killed when the car they were riding in went off I-91 in Enfield and struck a tree Sunday morning.
The driver of the car, Christopher Vega, 20, of Plainville, survived. His three passengers were pronounced dead at the scene. Vega’s car was traveling south on I-91 near exit 47E when it veered off to the right side of the road, traveled through the grass shoulder and up an embankment and hit a tree, said state police have not released any other details about the crash.
Friends took to Rogers’ Facebook to offer their condolences. Some were in disbelief, pleading with Rogers to answer their posts.
Rogers graduated from Bristol Eastern High School in 2016. Friends will hold a candlelight vigil for him at the school Saturday at 7 p.m.
Several of Southington High School graduate’s former peers and friends also took to Facebook on Tuesday to express their grief, mourn Harris and remember the good moments that they shared together.
“I can’t believe you passed away Taahir Harris, rest in peace!” wrote Destiny Cruz. “You will be missed. You always found a way to put a smile on people’s faces. I remember you were in wood shop and in my youth group at my church. I remember you were in health class. You were so outgoing and funny.”
Kiara Michelle Reyes wrote that she was in shock when she heard the news.
“I can’t stop crying,” she wrote. “All I can do is pray. R.I.P. Taahir Harris, you will be missed.”
Taylor Baur wrote that Harris was “another one from school gone too early.”
Harris was also a football player, playing for the Southington High School team. Football head coach Mike Drury said Harris played his freshman to junior seasons.
“He was a good kid to have in the program,” Drury said. “He worked hard every day and was fun to have around. It’s such a sad situation.”
Drury stated that a lot of kids in the school knew Harris, as did a lot of former football players.
“There’s going to be a lot of people affected by this,” Drury said.
“It’s just a tragic incident,” he continued. “It’s such a sad thing that occurred and our thoughts and wishes go out to his family and friends.”
Southington school officials said they are working with students to do some type of memorial Saturday for Harris as well.
New Britain High School students will hold a candlelight vigil Friday at 7 p.m. to honor Negron at the Satellite Careers Academy at the Roosevelt school where he attended. Grief counseling has been offered to students, NBHS officials said.
“The students and staff at the Satellite Careers Academy are shocked and saddened by the sudden loss of Moses,” said the school’s Principal Michael Foran. “He was well liked and respected at our school. His teachers describe him simply as a ‘great kid.’ He will be missed by all of us at the SCA and our thoughts and prayers go out to his family.”
Additional social work services are being offered to staff and students to help them cope with the tragedy, Foran said.
Students and friends have mobilized to help Negron’s family pay for his funeral expenses with a GoFundMe account and by selling necklaces that can be worn at Friday’s vigil.
Justin Muszynski, Brian Johnson and David Glovach contributed to this story.