A 19-year-old victim who died in a fiery car crash in Burbank was laid to rest Friday as a community grappled with her death and that of four of her friends. Kate Larsen reports for the NBC4 News at 11 p.m. on Oct. 4, 2013.
Friends and family of five young adults killed in a fiery single-car crash struggled to come to terms with the tragedy Friday, nearly a week after the fatal crash and on the same day one of the young victims was laid to rest.
“It’s a week now, still hard to believe that anything really happened,” said Stasic Markgrif, friend of the victims.
“I’ve actually come here almost every day since it happened,” Markgrif added, referring to the growing memorial of candles, hand-written notes, photos and flowers created for the teens.
Family and friends identified the victims as Stephen Stoll, Sebastian Forero, Sameer Nevarez, Malak Hariri and Sugey Cuevas.
They were traveling in a car about 4 a.m. Sept. 27 when the driver lost control, slammed into concrete and the car burst into flames. The crash happened near the 5 Freeway and Scott Road offramp in Burbank.
Earlier Friday, hundreds of mourners attended a funeral in North Hollywood for 19-year-old Malik Hariri.
Her parents recalled her beautiful smile.
“What you tell Malik, she smiles,” said Allie Hariri, the victim’s father. “In school, in the house, everybody always says Malik smiles.”
“God took her so fast from us, but she’s an angel. She’s in the sky and one day I will see her.”
The only survivor, Savannah Underwood, escaped with a broken leg. While hospitalized, the 18-year-old tweeted about the crash that killed her friends, saying she is emotionally and physically broken.
“I survived for a reason last night, & am determined to figure out why, stay strong everyone <3,” she tweeted. “I just want to wake up from this nightmare.”
The cause of the wreck is under investigation. Shortly after the crash, investigators said speed likely was a factor.
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