BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — A vigil was held in east Bakersfield on Friday for a 13-year-old boy that was struck by a car in June.
Friends and family gathered at the intersection of Niles Street and Park Drive, where the accident happened. Over 100 people came out to mourn Alejandro Vargas Jr.
"It means a lot, it means a lot to us. It really means a lot. He shouldn't have been taken away from us so young," said Josie Rosel, Alejandro's mother.
Alejandro was a 13-year-old Walter Stiern Middle School student who would have been in eighth grade this year. Friday would have been his 14th birthday.
"He was a wonderful kid with a big heart, he loved to skateboard, he loved to play basketball, he loved to play football, but his biggest thing was skateboarding," Rosel said.
Over 100 people turned out to Friday's vigil, most being friends or classmates from Alejandro's school. They're the ones who organized the event.
"It's just awesome, as you can see it's just a really good sense of community. I'm getting choked up talking about it. But it just shows that we have a really good family here so it's just nice to see everyone come out and support," said Chris Biezad, who was one of Alejandro's teachers.
As the night progressed, fireworks popped above, and the large group even sang "Happy Birthday" for Alejandro.
"Today is his first birthday up in heaven. And to see all this love and support for him means a lot to us...It means a lot to me," Rosel said.