Tragedy struck Friday night when Sergio Romero, a very sweet and talented 15-year-old music student at JAMS and a San Marcos High School sophomore, was hit and killed by a speeding truck at Ortega and Milpas Streets. The driver alleged he didn’t see him crossing in the crosswalk where another car was stopped in the opposite direction allowing Sergio to cross.
Sergio had just finished a teen night session where he had been practicing for a performance he was to give at Avo Fest 2011 the next morning along with this band mates, Nick Vargas (his best friend) and Josh Webb. Nick and Josh had already left and Josh only learned about the accident when he got to Avo Fest the next morning.
For me, the show could only go on if Sergio was there, so after a practically sleepless night for all of us, my brother Harry, one of Sergio’s music teachers, came over and helped me take the pictures off his camera. We enlarged a picture of Sergio smiling big with his guitar, and it was placed right in front center stage. I encircled it with flower vines, a sprig of fresh sweet-smelling lavender all tied up with raffia in a bow. We all felt his spirit with us as we watched his band mates complete their gig. Sergio’s amazing parents Armando and Lupita, so stoic and gracious, and his 10-year-old brother Alan, bravely came to the event to support Nick and Josh and videotape the performance. While the music played, a little boy around 4-years-old came up and took the lavender and started dancing around with it so sweetly, and a couple showed up with two little girls who were dressed as beautiful fairies, and they danced and waved their flower wands. What compelled that little boy to gently pull that fragrant lavender off the picture and start dancing around with it like that? Again we felt Sergio’s spirit with us.
JAMS will always honor Sergio’s life and all that he did to help JAMS. He said to me months before he passed, that he was going to help raise money and keep JAMS going. He and a couple of friends started street performing with their guitars and singing in front of the market on Milpas Street to raise awareness and money. He was a philanthropist at age 15.
JAMS music school was created in honor of my little girl, Jasmine, who, at age 10, was taken by a fallen tree in Yosemite. My last memories of her were that of the music she was just discovering — she had an amazing voice and was a little singer/songwriter.
I am calling out to the community to help honor and celebrate their lives and the power of music to heal us all. Please come forth and spread the love for Sergio and his family and the music and help us organize a benefit concert.