Services at 10 a.m. today for Amador Valley junior Jorge Barraza

Fatal pedestrian crash on First Street deemed an accident

A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. Monday for Jorge Barraza, a 17-year-old Amador Valley High School junior who died Nov. 15 after he was hit by a car on First Street and Abbie Street.

The service will be held in St. Augustine Catholic Church, 3999 Bernal Ave. in Pleasanton.

Mr. Barraza was remembered by teachers and friends this week for always being able to offer a smile and a good attitude.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with Jorge's family during this incredibly difficult time," Amador Valley principal Tom Drescher said in an email to staff.

"This is a tragic loss, and we're all sort of reeling from this reality, and our thoughts and prayers go out to the family," Drescher said in an interview. "As a school community, we're trying to rally and come together and try to find ways to support Jorge's family."

A [ GoFundMe account has been made for Jorge's family to assist with funeral costs. As of Wednesday afternoon, more than $23,000 in donations had been raised.

Jorge was remembered this week as an essential part of Amador Valley's special education community. His friends and teachers said he always had a positive attitude, loved learning new things and was always kind.

He loved the school's culinary education program and always looked forward to creating in the kitchen. Once, when another student was having a hard time in an art class, he offered a reassuring pat on the shoulder to calm his friend down.

"Jorge was an absolute pleasure and joy to have in the classroom. Jorge had a passion for education and learning new things," his teacher Alicia Newell said. "He enjoyed reading, art and spending time with his classmates. Jorge always had a smile on his face when he was at the school dances. Jorge had a great sense of humor and made his classmates and teachers laugh."

"Jorge will be sorely missed by his family and friends," she added. "Jorge made all that had the pleasure of working with him very proud."

His friends remember Jorge as a kind, thoughtful person who always had a positive attitude.

"A part of us is missing, and no one can fill his place," his friends told Demateo. "He was a good friend!"

Amador Valley alumnus Branden West said Jorge had a tranquil personality and often helped soothe others in his classes.

"I think he made people around him more calm," he said. "I'd probably say he was a peaceful and gentle guy."

Cris Byers, an assistant to a special education teacher at Amador Valley, posted on the donation page that she will "miss your smile and humor."

"May God keep you in his loving arms and provide strength to your family during this trying time," she added.

Pleasanton police Sgt. Joe Leonardo said Barraza ran in front of a Mercedes near the intersection of First and Abbie streets while trying to reach the other side of the road at about 6:23 p.m.

Police have deemed the incident an accident saying the teen tried to cross First Street in the nighttime hours, and the driver said he didn't see the teen until it was too late, Leonardo added.

The driver, a Stanislaus County resident, was traveling south on First Street between 25 and 30 miles an hour. The driver, whose name was not released by police, stayed on scene and cooperated with police. He will not be charged in relation the the crash, Leonardo said.

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8 people like this
Posted by Brian
a resident of Mohr Park
on Nov 18, 2015 at 4:23 pm

Best check the drivers PHONE!!! I was nearly killed by a texter, but luckily just bounced 2-1/2 lanes over, tore my shoulder and busted back. I ain't buying the driver didn't see him, just where was his eyes then exactly?

32 people like this
Posted by shocked
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Nov 18, 2015 at 4:35 pm

@ Brian What a cold comment..Don't you think the police checked his phone? Did you NOT read where the young man "ran in front of his car" "30 feet beyond the crosswalk"? Where is your compassion? God forbid this happened to you and have people judge you. It was an ACCIDENT! This poor man has to live with this for the rest of his life. I can't imagine how devastated he must be..It says a lot that this man stayed and cooperated. How many people would have ran? Don't you think your comments would be better served to support the young mans family! Send your condolences. Put yourself in their shoes and the drivers shoes? God Bless all those involved...this is truly a horrible tragedy!

23 people like this
Posted by parent
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Nov 18, 2015 at 8:58 pm

May God Bless Jorge and his family. Also the driver who also has his life forever changed. Accidents are tragic for so many involved.

11 people like this
Posted by Sandra Betts
a resident of another community
on Nov 18, 2015 at 11:02 pm

My deepest condolences to Jorge's family. He was a sweet boy whose kind nature touched many of us, and he will be remembered fondly. Rest in peace, dear boy. You will be missed.

27 people like this
Posted by Heartbroken
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Nov 19, 2015 at 9:30 am

When people ASSUMED the driver was a fault, there was nothing but blame, hatred & calling for his punisshment.. He's INNOCENT people. The young man ran into HIS path! Everyone SHOULD be saddened that a young man lost his life. Everyone should also be concerned about that man & the passager who has to live with this tragedy for the rest of their lives!! This community rallied around the young mans family, as they should. I wonder what kind of support this man has from this community!! Judgemental much?

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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