Mass to be held for UM graduate killed in crash
CORAL GABLES, Fla. (WSVN) -- A University of Miami student killed in a car crash on Mother's Day, just two days after receiving his diploma, was remembered at a mass.
A mass was held Monday at 5 p.m. in memory of Dino Ghilotti at St. Augustine Catholic Church in Coral Gables, followed by a reception at the Newman Alumni Center.
UM President Donna Shalala arrived at the church prior to the mass to meet privately with Ghilotti's family.
Ghilotti had graduated from UM three days ago with a degree in Business Administration and was ready to join his family's construction business in San Francisco before the tragic accident took his life.
According to the Coral Gables Police Department, the student was the passenger in a car that was involved in a deadly accident on Bird Road and San Amaro Drive, at around 4:30 Sunday morning.
Ghilotti was reportedly celebrating graduation with friends and family just before the deadly crash.
Police said they believe the accident involved two cars. The driver in the black BMW X3, 21-year-old Allison Meyers, was also a student at UM but was not severely injured. The driver of the other vehicle, a silver BMW 521i, was identified as Rosalia Pardo. Both drivers were injured, but no further details were made available.
Neighbors in the area were woken up by the noise of the crash. "I saw the car," said John Rodaz, "a BMW over here on the corner and another car about 10 yards down. It looked like a very serious accident."
Neighbors on the scene said the paramedics did their best to save the young man's life. "They were trying to resuscitate a young man over here," said Rodaz, "and they weren't successful."
Shalala had previously released a statement that read in part, "Dino Ghilotti had a bright future ahead of him and was about to join his family's construction business. Our condolences and thoughts are with his family and friends today."
Fellow student and frat brother Thomas Manna remembers Ghilotti as the embodiment of their fraternity's motto: "scholars, leaders, athletes, gentlemen." "He was always the fun-loving guy, the guy with always a smile on his face" he said. "Always having a great time, and he rubbed off really positively on all the members of the frat.
Ghilotti's sister, Michelle Ghilotti Mandel, released a statement that reads in part, "My family and I are grieving an immeasurable loss. For any of you who didn't know Dino Cat-Daddy Ghilotti, he was what I like to call our family's 'fireplace' ... He always brought us together in such a warm and wonderful way. He was the life of the party, extremely loving, compassionate and selfless. You will be missed, little brother. Sorely, sorely missed."
Police are still investigating.
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