Boy's Family Will Have Hard Time Coming In From Guatemala, Friends Say

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Friends on Sunday were mourning a 14-year-old boy who was killed while riding his bicycle this weekend in Brooklyn.

As CBS2’s Dave Carlin reported, friends said Edwin Vicente Ajacalon has no family in New York City, and his financially-strapped parents in Guatemala will have great difficulty coming in.

Flowers and a candle were set up Sunday on the side of Park Slope’s Fifth Avenue, where Edwin was killed while riding his bicycle around 5:45 p.m. Saturday.

Diana Popoca said her heart is broken. She knew the young victim as a friend of her son’s and made dinners for them.

Surveillance video from a store on the block shows the boy pedaling along 23rd Street, and then riding across Fifth Avenue with a car heading right for him.

After the boy was fatally struck, the driver stayed on the scene and was not charged with any crime.

Popoca says the victim’s mother and father live in Guatemala.

“He’s got no family in this country,” Popoca said through an interpreter.

She said the parents were told their son is dead, but do not have the money to travel to the U.S. and retrieve his body.

Edwin moved to Brooklyn a year ago. After living briefly with his only relative in the U.S., an uncle. He met this man who took him in and described him as “hardworking.”

That man got a call early Sunday morning from police saying the boy was dead.

He said the teen was a pleasant roommate who worked various jobs, including food delivery, to pay rent and send money home to his parents.

The teen lived in a single room with five young men — all of them working delivering food on bikes.

Friends said Edwin’s life was a struggle , and he never even made it to 15.

The driver of the car was taken to the hospital for an evaluation.

  1. Trevor Frith says:

    We must all care about these types of tragic crashes but we must also ask, would the Google car have stopped in time? What if there was a way this driver could have started the braking ¾ of a second sooner and stopped 30 – 40 feet shorter, perhaps in an even shorter distance than the Google car. There is. Sad that those in charge of driver legislation and training refuse to teach student drivers the safer (But girly!) left foot braking method and ban driving instructors from teaching the very complicated and difficult to mentally maintain especially for older drivers (over 40!), inefficient (poor reaction time and stopping distance) and dangerous (right foot pedal errors) right foot braking on automatic transmission cars. See DOT HS 811 597, 812 058and 812 431. NHTSA insists on calling it “pedal misapplication” and always blames the driver rather than their beloved right foot braking method. Score to date 150,000 dead, millions injured, and billions in costs. The price men both in and out of government are apparently willing to pay to maintain their systemic belief in right foot braking on automatic cars even though they have zero scientific justification. As one transportation “expert” said “That’s the way it’s always been taught”! This is not about who has the safer braking method but rather why they refuse to scientifically compare the two methods! Was it driver error or the way we taught them to brake?

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