Metea Valley students remember sophomore killed in crash
It's common for students at Metea Valley High School in Aurora to show their school spirit by dressing in white T-shirts for football games.
On Wednesday, students dressed in white to honor one of their own — a student who friends say was excited to play in front of his classmates on next year's varsity squad but never got the chance.
Devin Meadows, a 15-year-old Metea sophomore, was killed in a car crash early Tuesday; police say he and three friends were in a fast-moving car that struck a curb and crashed into a house's attached garage. Devin, who police say wasn't wearing a seat belt, flew out of the back seat and landed on the street, where he was pronounced dead.
The three other 15-year-olds in the vehicle had minor injuries.
Two of the teens who survived the crash spoke Wednesday during an off-campus prayer service at Faith Lutheran Church in Aurora organized by Metea Valley students.
But students who attended say the two teens didn't talk openly about the crash — only about their memories of Devin.
"They knew if they shared their memories, people would laugh," said Jack Szott, 15, a sophomore at Metea Valley.
Still, he said, there were many tears shed. "It's the most emotional I've seen my friends."
One of the teens in the car with Devin early Tuesday morning has known him since elementary school, students said.
Jaquelin Jazo, 15, has known both teens since she attended school with them at Granger Middle School, located just steps from where the fatal crash occurred. She says she'll always remember Devin's smile.
"He was so kind to people. It was genuine kindness," Jazo said.
Tim Bowling, 15, one of Devin's teammates on the sophomore football team, said Devin wasn't only an impressive athlete but also someone who encouraged people in the hallways and classrooms at Metea Valley.
Bowling recalls giving a speech in class soon after transferring to Metea from another school. Devin already knew him from the football team, but he really came to know him after the speech.
"He came up to me and said he respected me even more," Bowling said. "He always made me smile."
Metea Valley Principal Jim Schmid said earlier Wednesday that students continued to meet with grief counselors during the school day, and many wrote their memories of Devin on a large piece of paper the school plans to give to his family.
About 80 percent of the student body wore white to school, Schmid said.
Meanwhile, Aurora police on Wednesday continued their investigation into the fatal crash, which occurred at 1:43 a.m. Tuesday on the 2700 block of Hamman Way.
Investigators have speculated the four teens were "joy-riding or pulling some type of prank," Lt. Pete Inda said, and police were trying to confirm speculation they've heard from students that the teens may have been stealing pumpkins from houses with the intention of piling them up in front of a girl's house.
Police have also heard speculation that the teens were driving around smashing pumpkins.
The 15-year-old driver behind the wheel of his parents' Chevrolet Malibu was questioned by police and released Tuesday without any charges or citations. Police have said charges could be filed at the conclusion of their investigation.
Police have interviewed neighbors near the crash site, students and the four teens' parents, who have been "very cooperative," Inda said.
"We're talking to anyone who may be witness to anything," Inda said. "Once we complete the investigation, then in consultation with the states attorney's office, we will discuss charges."
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