Life Does Not Have a Reset Button

by Saif Uraizee

The risks of motor vehicle crashes are higher in 16 to 19 year-olds than among any other age group. In fact, for each mile driven, teen drivers are nearly three times more likely than drivers aged 20 and older to be in a fatal crash.

Around 1 am on September 4th, 2016, three students James Logan high school students were involved in a car crash on southbound Interstate 880 in Hayward when their car collided with a pickup truck. Joe Junior Ioramo, an 11th grade independent studies student, and senior Izaiah Mease both died in the car crash. Mease was pronounced dead at the scene and Ioramo later in the hospital that afternoon. The third teen in the passenger seat, Izaiah PaoPao, survived and is recovering in the hospital. On Sunday night, hundreds of people joined for a candlelight vigil for the two students at the high school. Several friends also stopped by the school on Labor Day to pay their respects.

Junior was known to be a huge jokester around school and always brought smiles to many faces. He was fighting through many surgeries and at one point they thought that he would make it. Danielle, Junior’s sister, says she fought with her baby brother the most and is taking his death the hardest. Both of the teens were well known football players at the school.

Izaiah Mease, the driver, was currently playing his senior season on the team as a running back and linebacker. “If I had a daughter, he is the type of young man I would like her to be with. He is everything you can ask from a young man; respectful, honest, hardworking,” said Zack McNally, James Logan football coach.

Both students were well known to the community as being big, kind-hearted individuals. Principal Abhi Brar of James Logan High School in Union City said, “It’s not going to be a normal day. Logan students are resilient and supportive of each other.” He believes that even though it is a tough time he encourages parents to send their kids to school because most importantly, students need to see one another and be with each other, even if it is just to say hi and hug and cry together.

The CHP is still investigating the crash and the details of what happened. This should be taken as a message for other teen drivers all across the world. It is always important to pay attention and follow all safety precautions when driving any type of motor vehicle. Driving is a complex skill - one that must be practiced to be learned well. Teenagers’ lack of driving experience, together with risk taking behavior, puts them at a higher risk to be involved in crashes. There should never be a rush when applying for a driver’s license because driving is not a joke. These young teens did not deserve to go at such a young age because life does not have a reset button, and you should always drive safe.