PALMDALE – The entire community is invited to funeral services this week for Michael “Speedy” Valenzuela, the soccer-playing Knight High School graduate killed in a school bus crash on March 25.
The viewing will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. on Friday (April 12) at Halley-Olsen-Murphy Funerals & Cremations at 3150 East Palmdale Boulevard in Palmdale.
The funeral begins at 1 p.m. on Saturday (April 13) at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, located at 1600 East Avenue R-4 in Palmdale.
“The family is inviting the community to attend because of the show of support they gave for Michael, because they came out in great numbers to help raise the money to put this young kid to rest,” said Dr. Miguel Coronado, President of Agents of Change, an organization that’s been helping the Valenzuela family.
Valenzuela’s teammates in the Palmdale Youth Soccer League have also been working hard to support the Valenzuela family.
The team, which was renamed Team Speedy in honor of 18-year-old Valenzuela, held two successful car wash fundraisers on March 30 and April 7.
There was also a fundraising event at Vince’s Pasta and Pizza on April 6.
Thanks to great community turnouts at all the events, the group has managed to raise more than $8,000 to help cover the cost of Valenzuela’s funeral.
“Thank goodness Michael’s family doesn’t have to bear it all alone,” said Jackie Perez of the Palmdale Youth Soccer League. “We’re truly blessed to live in such a great community.”
The California Highway Patrol has requested assistance from the public in identifying persons who might have witnessed the fatal collision, which happened around 3:54 p.m. on Monday, March 25 in the vicinity of Avenue R and 55th Street East.
Valenzuela was riding his bicycle southbound on 55th Street East, on his way to soccer practice, when he was struck by a school bus filled with students that was traveling westbound on Avenue R. Valenzuela died a short time later at the hospital.
Investigators believe there were about six vehicles in the area at the time of the crash, and they are encouraging the drivers and occupants of those vehicles to come forward.
If you have any information on this incident, please contact CHP officers Wheeler or Howell at 661-948-8541.
To make a personal donation to the Valenzuela family, visit any Bank of America and ask to donate to the account of Juan and Michael Valenzuela. The account number is 325019314271.
Previous related stories: