Fresno mother speaks about a train crash that killed her son

August 25, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
The mother of Reuben Fernandez, a 20-year-old Fresno man who was one of four young people killed when their car collided with a train, is speaking publicly for the first time about her son and the accident that took his life.

California Highway Patrol says the crash happened in Fresno County just before 2 a.m. Monday. Investigators say the car was attempting to cross the railroad. Investigators are looking into why the car never made it across the tracks.

Fernandez was an only child; he loved spending time with his friends, family and especially loved hanging out with his mom, Sandy Gonzalez.

"Reuben was amazing, he's a shining star, he's full of life, he gave, he was so charming so witty," Gonzalez said. "Just lovable, great hugger, I'm going to miss those hugs."

California Highway Patrol says he and four other friends were heading back from a meeting about launching a marketing business when their car crossed over this track on Jefferson Avenue near Golden State Boulevard. Investigators say that is when a freight train slammed into their car. Fernandez, Michaela Smith, David Alonzo and Angelina Velasquez were killed in the crash. Family members say Reuben was sitting behind the driver's seat, on the side where the impact took place.

"I pray to god my soldier did not suffer, he didn't need to suffer. He was a wonderful man," Gonzalez said.

The only survivor Alexandra Martinez suffered several broken bones and is still in the hospital.

"She's doing better, she has some injuries but I just thank god she is with me. If they took them all I don't know what I could have did," Kenny Garcia, Alexandra Martinez's cousin said.

Relatives of the victim's say there is a camera installed on the front of that train and investigators are reviewing the footage. Investigators say it's unclear why the collision happened. They say alcohol is not believed to be a factor.


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