TACOMA, Wash. - The crowd of more than 200 students gathered at a candlelight vigil at Franklin Pierce High School could not have been more diverse.
But one thing bonded them together. They shared the love, friendship and enthusiasm of 17-year-old senior Quinnton Dimmitt.
Counselor Steve Holt said the school has lost one of its brightest lights. "What I saw in Quinnton is that he's the type of person where it doesn't matter whether you're black or white or short or tall, he just loved everybody."
Investigators say Dimmitt’s car was crushed by a speeding driver, as he crossed an intersection at Waller Road East and 84th Street East on Friday morning. The 27-year-old driver who hit Dimmitt’s car may have also been under the influence of alcohol, according to police, who are waiting for toxicology test results to determine criminal charges.
Dimmitt’s father told the crowd his son's car was pushed more than 100 feet after impact.
Dimmitt’s lasting impact on this community is undeniable.
“There are a few kids that are like you truly changed my life, and Quinnton is that kid,” said computer teacher Ariel Dykestra. “He's the one who makes you want to be a better person.”
“I've been his counselor for four years,” said Jonathan Love, “and it's probably the least amount of stress I've ever had from any student. And i'm pretty sure he's prevented a lot of students from needing to see me!"
Fellow student Madison Giles agreed, “He could just light up your day with just one smile, and I will never ever forget him. He's the nicest person I ever met, and he impacted my life completely,” she said.
Quinnton's teachers told KIRO 7 the message for all the people who will never meet Dimmitt-is to consider the impact you could make when you get behind the wheel. Dykestra posed a question each driver faces:
"Ask yourself, before you text or drink and drive, ‘If i make this one choice can it truly affect someone else?’ and it will!"