22-year-old Casey Bernardo and 16-year-old Giovanni Azevado Ramirez died Friday night after running a stop sign and crashing into semi-truck near Seventh and Grangeville.
The family tells Action News the two were on their way to work. Casey was a Tulare Western High School graduate and Giovanni was a junior.
Their loss is weighing heavy on the hearts of the community.
"These are kids that had a long road ahead of them, unfortunately, because of this tragedy their lives were cut short, so I expressed our support for them during this time," said Tulare Western principal Kevin Covert.
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Giovanni's family said the teen had just turned 16.
His mother, Lucy Ramirez, sent Action News a statement:
"Giovonni had just turned 16 on July 25th, he was tragically taken from us before he was able to begin his journey in life. Gio was very ambitious growing up, he enjoyed sports and being around his family. He was taken from us much too soon, and we are now unable to watch him grow and enjoy the simple pleasures in life. Our hearts will forever be broken, we will miss Gio's contagious laugh and goofy character, he will always be in our hearts. We'd like to thank those who have reached out to the family, all of your prayers are greatly appreciated."
A moment of silence will be held at Tulare Western's upcoming Friday night football game.
Giovanni's family has set up a GoFundMe account.