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Farmingdale mourns 5 teens killed in crash

Kristin Thorne reports on deadly car crash that took the lives of 5 teens over the weekend in Farmingdale.
May 12, 2014 4:03:27 PM PDT
Grief counselors were at a Long Island high school Monday after several classmates were killed in a car crash over the weekend. Four died immediately after the accident, while the fifth died at the hospital late Sunday.

They have been identified as the driver, 17-year-old Tristan Reichle, 18-year-old Jesse Romero, 14-year-old Carly Lonborg and 15-year-old Noah Francis, who died in the crash early Saturday. Cody Talanian, 17, was pronounced dead at 10 p.m. Sunday at Nassau University Medical Center.

All five victims attended Farmingdale High School, though one was a former student.

Police are still investigating the cause of the deadly crash, while the grieving process continues in the community.

CLICK HERE to see images from the scene of the crash and from the emotional vigil

Many classmates visited a growing makeshift memorial at the scene of the crash Monday.

"Our deepest condolences to all the other families, they're in our prayers, we're not the only ones affected by this. There's four other families," said John Lonborg, the father of one of the victims.

"He had so many things that were going well for him. He got a job. He was going to be 18 in 2 weeks. He had everything the whole world," said Tristan Reichle's uncle George Gasparotti.

Family members tell us the friends had been hanging out, as they did many times before, in a parking lot about a half a mile away from where the accident happened early Saturday morning.

Tristan's car crossed over into oncoming traffic on Conklin Avenue, striking a suburban. Several of the kids died instantly.

Many students at Farmingdale High School wore green Monday, the school's color, to show their solidarity.

Roughly 2,000 people attended a memorial service at St. Kilian's Roman Catholic Church Sunday night, trying to come to grips with the horrific loss.

School principal Glen Zakian was expecting Monday to be the most difficult day of his career.

"We will have grief counselors, social workers, guidance counselors, school psychologists all on staff, ready to help not only our students, but our faculty as well," he said. "There going to be looking at their student body and knowing there's a loss in their classroom, too. So our main goal is to help the students get through this, and then the faculty and staff as we fight through this."

Next to the spot where the crash happened on Conklin Street, friends have been leaving flowers with notes, colorful reminders of the bright lives lost and the dark cloud now hanging over Farmingdale.

Funeral services have been arranged for Lonborg.

A wake will be held Wednesday and Thursday from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at Trudden Funeral Home at 385 Main Street in Farmingdale. A funeral Mass will be held at 11 a.m. Friday at St. Killians Church at 485 Conklin Street in Farmingdale.

Services have also been set up for Reichle, who will be mourned at a wake Tuesday from 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at the Fredrick J Chapey and Sons Funeral Home, at 20 Hicksville Road in Bethpage. Other services will be private.
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