Monday, February 19, 2007


Cheryl Ceran 47, Ian Ceran 15, Julianna Ceran 7, killed when Carlos Prieto broadsided their car on Christmas Eve while they were returning from a Christmas play the Ceran children had been in. Carlos Prieto, illegal alien, was DUI and driving without a license. Prieto has at least 2 other drunk driving arrests. Cheryl and her 2 children leave a husband and 2 other children.
The Cerans are no strangers to grief, having lost three children to a rare brain cancer and two to premature births over the past several years.

Tuesday was Clarissa Ceran's 19th birthday. She should have celebrated at home with her mother, father, siblings and friends. Instead, Clarissa spent her birthday sitting up in her hospital bed for the first time since early Sunday. “I thought she would lose her legs,” her father said.Shortly before 2:30 a.m. Sunday, Clarissa, her 15-year-old brother, Ian, 12-year-old brother Caleb, 7-year-old sister Julianna and her parents, Gary and Cheryl, were driving home from a Christmas party when they were struck by an allegedly drunken driver who police say ran a red light at the intersection of 5400 South and 700 West. The impact killed Cheryl and Ian instantly. Julianna was flown to Primary Children's Medical Center but also died from her injuries a short time later.

Despite a leg injury, Gary managed to have each member of his family assess his or her condition. His eyes welled with tears as he recalled placing Ian's head in his lap and stroking his head as blood spilled from his face. "I checked him for a pulse ... I wasn't able to find one," he said. Cheryl's head also rested on Ian. "I couldn't find any evidence of life in her," he recalled. Gary found Caleb, held his face and did his best to calm him. "I said, 'We're going to be all right, buddy.' And he said, 'I love you, Dad' about five times. He asked what happened; I said we've been in a really bad accident ... I don't think Ian and your mom are going to make it."

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