The Clewiston community came together on Friday to say goodbye to a teen killed in a crash on the eve of his high school graduation.
Julian Avalo died after he lost control of his vehicle while driving on Flaghole Road, south of US-27, in Hendry County on May 13. His vehicle struck a semi.
Friends described him as someone who always had a smile on his face.
“That’s why I am calm in my heart, because I know he accomplished what he was meant to come to this world for,” said Maria Avalo, Julian’s mother. “He was a marvelous boy.”
The community paid Julian tribute with one last ride.
The driver and riders in the cars loved Julian.
All of them lined up, including the fire truck from Hendry County’s Fire Station 4, where Julian was part of the department’s Explorers Program.
Julian’s casket was placed on top of the truck.
“I think he accomplished everything… Everything, he graduated in this life,” Maria Avalo said. “It was a short life, but full of light. He was perfect my perfect boy, he was a ray of sunshine.”
Lon Sanchez, who knew Julian since the sixth grade, said he knows Julian is smiling now.
“I love you, Julian, and I’m going to ride on for you, brother,” Sandez said.
Maria Avalo said her son had the spirit of a fighter.
“Julian was a very special boy since he was little,” she said.