18-year-old Omahan dies from crash injuries - Omaha.com
Published Wednesday, October 17, 2012 at 2:17 pm / Updated at 6:55 am
18-year-old Omahan dies from crash injuries

Michael Tran, who was taken off life support Wednesday, was described as a hard worker who could put a smile on the faces of his co-workers at CoCo Key Water Resort.

Tran was "an energetic and happy guy who always wanted to go out, have fun and live his life," said co-worker and friend Freddy Jaramillo.

Tran, 18, died Wednesday at Nebraska Medical Center, where he was taken in critical condition after a weekend car crash near 72nd and Grover Streets.

Police said Tran was eastbound on Grover Street about 12:10 a.m. Saturday when his Mitsubishi Eclipse was hit by a Honda Civic traveling south on 72nd Street at a high rate of speed.

The Honda driver, Sergio Valdivia-Marquez, 21, of Omaha, was taken to the hospital with leg injuries.

The force of the impact pushed Tran's Eclipse into a third vehicle that was waiting at the red light in the northbound lane of 72nd Street. That driver was not injured, police said.

Valdivia-Marquez later was booked into jail on suspicion of driving under the influence causing serious injury. After Tran's death Wednesday, Valdivia-Marquez was charged with motor vehicle homicide, Douglas County Attorney Don Kleine said.

Valdivia-Marquez has been cited or charged nearly a dozen times for traffic-related offenses since 2009, according to court documents. He never has held a Nebraska driver's license, and state officials said there is no record of him being licensed in any other state.

Tran graduated from Omaha Bryan High School. The CoCo Keys job was his first, Jaramillo said. He was happy when he got the job, his friend said, and wasn't shy about getting to know the rest of the staff.

Jaramillo said Tran loved playing basketball. The two of them would go to Tran's house after work to play.

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