Family of Pasco teen who died in crash receives community support to celebrate his life

Image credit: GoFundMe organized by Morgan Rosenthal for the family of Eli Barajas-Diaz

PASCO, Wash. — Family, friends, and community members are rallying around the family of 18-year-old Eli Barajas-Diaz, who passed away in a tragic car accident at the Road 68 exit of I-182 on Monday.

A GoFundMe organized by Morgan Rosenthal will benefit Eli’s family as they make final arrangements and plan a celebration of his life. As of the time of this article, over $24,000 has been raised by community members who want to support the young man’s family and friends as they say goodbye. That’s approaching five times the organizer’s goal of $5,000 in just 23 hours as of the time of this article.

Barajas-Diaz, who is described as “very loving and caring,” graduated from Chiawana High School in June 2021. He was only at the beginning of his journey and the cusp of his adult life when he was involved in a single-vehicle, rollover accident on July 19, 2021.

PREVIOUS: Pasco teenager dies in rollover accident while exiting I-182 at Road 68

According to information from the WSP, Barajas-Diaz was exiting the highway and under-negotiated the curve of the off-ramp at the Road 68 exit. His vehicle rolled over and came to a halt at a nearby bike lane. He was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash due to injuries sustained by the trauma. WSP Troopers determined that he wasn’t wearing his seatbelt at the time of the accident.

This tragedy has resonated deeply with community members throughout the Tri-Cities — Whether they knew the young man or not. In his youth, he loved to participate in sports like wrestling, football, and more recently, lacrosse. Rosenthal’s excerpt on GoFundMe said that Eli found his calling with lacrosse; a sport that he found a great passion for and that he used to build incredible friendships.

If you would like to contribute to a celebration of Eli’s life, you can click here to visit his GoFundMe.


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