Community Establishes Scholarships in Honor of Boys Killed in Highway 49 Crash

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AUBURN -- Best friends Trevor Keller and Jared Gaches shared a special bond. They both played football for Placer High School, and family and friends say both could light up a room.

Last year, the two boys were struck and killed by an impaired driver while walking along Highway 49.

Jared's sister says her brother, the youngest of six siblings, had a special gift.

"He was bright. It was something that was impossible to ignore, and that was something that, annoying as it may have been, he always got you to smile, always got you to laugh," Brittany Woodin, Jared's sister, told FOX40. "He was really, out of all of us, was probably the one that was going to do something."

Placer High School sophomore, Josh Trull, was one of Trevor's best friends. He remembers his mischievous side.

"He was always doing stuff. Like one day, he was at my house and he just looked up at me and said, 'I have an idea,' and then the next thing I knew he was hanging off the telephone wire in my backyard swinging around," Trull said.

The two boys were so loved, the community of Auburn came up with a fundraiser -- a banquet and auction -- to raise money for scholarships in honor of the boys. The scholarships will help kids participate in youth football and raise awareness on driving while impaired education.

Megan Sharpe is one of the board members behind the scholarships, but the effort is personal too. Trevor was her nephew.

"Everybody wants support when something like this happens," she told FOX40. "And we are here to change lives and turn something tragic into such a great thing."

For the auction, San Francisco 49ers safety Eric Reid donated a pair of signed cleats. He was Trevor's hero.

The teen spotted the NFL player at an ice cream shop in Monterrey a few years ago and snapped a photo with him. When Reid heard about the crash, he met with the family and decided to participate.

Family members say that despite Monday being the one year anniversary of the tragedy, the community support helps their hurting hearts.

"It makes you feel like you aren't doing it alone," Woodin said. "And just to know that they are remembered, so many people loved them, that their life here was such a big thing, makes it doable."