Florida Keys boat crash kills teen, injures 10



An earlier version of this article gave an incorrect location for Boca Chitta Key. It is in the Northern Keys on Biscayne Bay. The article has been corrected.

A Miami high school senior was killed and 10 others were injured Sunday in a boat collision in the Florida Keys.

Lucy Fernandez, 17, was on board with 13 other people when the 29-foot Robalo center console capsized near Boca Chita Key in Biscayne Bay around 6:30 p.m. Miami-Dade Fire Rescue reported 11 people were injured, including Fernandez. All four were seriously injured and hospitalized.

Fernandez, a student at Our Lady of Lourdes Academy in Miami, succumbed to her injuries.

“Known for her smile, larger-than-life personality and signature laugh, Lucy was a joy to all who knew her and a shining light at our school,” said her all-girls Catholic high school. He wrote on Facebook. “The hundreds of people who joined us at the Grotto this evening to pray for her repose are a testament to her beautiful legacy of faith, love and sisterhood.”

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said the boat hit a channel marker and overturned. All on board, including two adults and 12 children, were evacuated. Alcohol does not appear to have been a factor in the collision, the commission said.

Miami-Dade police were the first to arrive at the scene and pull people — some seriously injured — out of the water, Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Capt. Juan Carrandez said in a video provided by the fire-rescue agency. Police brought them to the island of Elliot Key, where some were airlifted. Firefighters helped police pull others out of the water, evaluated them and transported some to hospitals, Currantes said.

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Many were wrapped in white blankets from a fireboat docked at Black Point Marina in Homestead, Fla., where first responders were evaluating patients, video provided by the Fire Rescue Agency showed.

The condition of the 10 injured was not clear Tuesday. Sister Carmen D., Superioress of Our Lady of Lourdes. Fernandez also wrote in a letter to community members on Monday that two of the injured were seniors at the school. The Miami Herald reported.

Students from the Carrollton School of the Sacred Heart in Miami were also injured. Rosary prayer was held in that school on Monday evening.

As the sun rose on Tuesday, Lourdes students dressed in their school uniforms gathered along the beach to pay their respects to Fernandez. Miami-based television station WSVN reported. Students from Lourdes and other local schools also gathered for a vigil Monday evening.

“For Lucy, her faith was a foundation, so I think in a time of so much heartache, so much confusion, so much loss, the only thing we know how to do or what to do is come together. Pray,” Lourdes theology teacher Alexandra Diaz told WSVN.

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