Syrissa Owens 15, of Mansfield dies in fatal car crash

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Syrissa Owens death – obituary, cause of death : Syrissa Owens 15, of Mansfield, Texas. Has passed away. She was involved in fatal auto crash on August 30th 2021.

Miss Owens worked as a food server at Cotton Patch Café, a place she works after school, she was a student of Legacy High School in Mansfield, she had previously attended and graduated from Tarrant County College.

According to reports, a year ago on a cool Sunday night, it was said that two cars pulled up to a stoplight in northwest Houston, a witness later told the police. In one, a shiny blue Volkswagen, 15-year-old Juan Reyes drove with his 14-year-old-girlfriend, Sydney Owens, beside him. Their best friends, Jannel Gonzales and Alonso Tristan, who had just started dating, were in the back seat, and then in another car was the teens’ friend Ali Mosa, 15. The light turned green, and a driver behind them watched as both cars raced down West Little York.

Juan, trying to avoid slower traffic, lost control of his Volkswagen, according to the police report. He swerved into the median and hit a tree — the impact so strong it split the car into three pieces, which were strewn across the four-lane highway. First responders later told Jannel’s mom Debra Gonzales that the wreck ranked among the worst they had seen.

The incident that occurs on that day has affected the lives and relationship of the teenagers leading to a fallout in the year. well Sydney died that night — leaving a hole in many lives. Jannel spent more than a month in the hospital. She and Alonso now rarely talk.

And Juan and Ali, once also best friends, face felony racing charges. Ali’s juvenile trial is set for December 4th. Police are looking for Juan. He moved this year to Ecuador to live with family, friends say, and has evaded arrest. Grieving, Sydney’s mom, Karen Owens, sued both of the boys’ parents over the death of her youngest daughter. She said she knows the legal wrangling won’t bring back her daughter but thinks the families owe her something.

The grieving mother blames the other kids saying “It’s because of their actions that people were injured and died,” who last week decided to sell her home which is located just miles from the wreck site, saying she can’t deal with the memories. The mother recalls the incident of that unfaithful night, the night of the dance, Alonso, Ali and Juan drove to her house in Juan’s Volkswagen. Sydney dressed in gold. Jannel wore strapless black and ringlets in her hair. The girls’ mothers helped the boys fix their ties, and a neighbor did the girls’ hair.

The friends were said to be part of a bigger clique, friends say, a group of teens who spent afternoons and weekends at Juan’s house. They battled each other in the video game Guitar Hero or dressed up for friends’ quinceañeras. Juan’s friends liked that Sydney wasn’t a “girly girl,” Alonso said. And Jannel and Sydney liked that Juan drove. In the Volkswagen, Juan chauffeured them to the mall and movies.

The girls didn’t mention to their parents that Sydney’s new boyfriend, just 15, had no driver’s licensenor did he have insurance. they didn’t mention that, just days before homecoming, Juan raced down Eldridge with them in the car, Jannel said. Sydney, fuming, broke up with her new boyfriend over that, her best friend says, but later took him back.9 days before the wreck she posted a comment on Juan’s MySpace page.

After the accident and the children had been rushed to ER. Parents waited in a hospital room alongside Juan and Alonso’s parents, all just tense parents strained by tragedy. But then emergency staff separated them and the differences in their grief became apparent. Debra remembers getting pulled toward the billing office while Karen went to another direction — to a private family room.

“Then I heard this scream that was undeniably of a mother, and I knew it was Karen, and I knew Sydney didn’t make it,” Debra said.

Friends had posted memorials to Sydney on YouTube. In them, the teenager beams in photo after photo, her arms usually wrapped around groups of girlfriends, songs such as Christina Aguilera’s Hurt in the background. Sydney’s friend Jannel was insulated from this. In a coma for four days, and unable to remember from day to day, she didn’t realize her best friend had died for nearly two weeks. When her parents finally told her, Jannel curled up into a ball on her cot, crying.

“She’s a 15-year-old girl trying to find who she is, because the person that she was, that she was very happy with, no longer exists,” Debra Gonzales said of her daughter. Jannel says she felt no blame about the crash at first, but as she saw others moving on with their lives, this changed. Once a talented gymnast, Jannel gave that up after the wreck — opting for after-school work with the Future Farmers of America. Something about the tumbling routines scares her now, she said.

When she got back from the hospital, Jannel heard that Juan was dating another girl, she said, and that he and Ali had told friends the wreck wasn’t their fault. Angry, she sent online bulletins to their friends accusing the boys of racing, said Chelsie Pepple, one of Sydney’s friends. That’s when things began to get ugly at school.

“When it first happened, everyone was taking the whole ‘It wasn’t his fault, it was an act of God (approach),’ ” said Chelsie, who went to Cypress Falls with Sydney and Juan. “But then everyone went from ‘It’s not his fault’ to ‘We hate Juan and he deserves to die

Juan did stop responding to e-mail requests for comment and his father, still in Houston, refused to talk about his whereabouts, saying again and again: “It was an accident.” An attorney hired by Juan’s father said the boy was racing because they were being chased. He has signed affidavits from Ali and his sister Rasha, both saying they saw a white SUV chasing Juan’s car and pushing it off the road, a factor not noted by either of the witnesses who spoke to police that night.

Ali declined to comment for this story, and a lawyer for the family said he couldn’t talk before the upcoming trial. Terrance Windham, who is handling Ali’s trial next month in juvenile court, said he also wouldn’t talk about specifics.

But prosecutor Doug Richards, who took the case before it moved to juvenile court, said it’s one that will stick with him for years. In his office downtown, Richards keeps an old file photo from the wreck scene. It’s a door of the Jetta, completely wrapped around a tree.

“You have these kids, and they have their whole lives in front of them,” he said. “Everybody has done stupid things in their lives, but in this case, they killed a girl and seriously injured another one, and so there are consequences to that.”

Late last month, homecoming came around again. Jannel went with her new boyfriend. Her parents drove. But beforehand, Karen came over to her house with a gift. It was a heart necklace. On the back she had gotten engraved a tiny message:

“I’ll be with you tonight. Love, Sydney.”

Jannel wears it every day.