15-year old cyclist killed in Norwalk collision identified

The teenage cyclist who died tragically — and needlessly — a full week after he was struck by a car has finally been publicly identified.

The Whittier Daily News reports (scroll down) that 15-year old Norwalk resident Jonathan Acosta Fernandez died from injuries he suffered when he was hit by a car driven by Ana Chavez of Whittier on June 3rd. The collision occurred near the intersection of Alondra and Pioneer Blvds in Norwalk around 3:10 pm; Fernandez was reportedly leaving the Norwalk Indoor Swap Meet when he was struck.

Police say Chavez was traveling at 60 mph at the time of the collision. She was initially booked on suspicion of felony drunk driving, with a bond $100,000, and is due to be arraigned on a charge of vehicular manslaughter in Downey Superior Court on Tuesday.

And once again, the authorities and the press seem to think a tiny bit of plastic and foam atop a rider’s head can offer some sort of magical protection against an accused drunk driver in a speeding vehicle.

Yes, it is important to wear a helmet; I haven’t ridden without one in over 25 years.

But Fernandez’ fate was sealed the moment an allegedly intoxicated driver got behind the wheel and put her foot down hard on the gas. Even if he’d been wearing a full body flak jacket, it would have offered little protection against a vehicle driven at that speed.

My deepest condolences to the family and friends of Jonathan Fernandez.


  1. Allan says:

    Thanks for getting this story told Ted. I was going to go to Downey’s courthouse during arraignment to see if I can get some info from someone. Seemed kinda odd that the kid spent about a week in the hospital and they didn’t know his name, but there it is in black and white. So it’s got to be true!

    I’m pretty sure I can make this hearing. So if you can work your magic and get the info, that would be a big help. I’ll do what I can, but as you probably can tell, I don’t have much confidence.

    • bikinginla says:

      Thanks Allan. I doubt I’m going to get any more information on this one, so let me know whatever you’re able to learn.

      • Allan says:

        Say for example someone needed to find out exactly where the accident occurred, how would someone find out? Normally there’s a group of candles and what not that pretty much indicates where the fatality occurred, but this death happened a week after the collision. So chances are pretty slim that there’s any kind of memorial out there.

        • Viridiana fernandez says:

          Our family decide too not put any candles where he was struck by a car! we were told that he was gonna cross The street about to get to the middle of the side walk when the collision occurred. There is candles where he got hit but we are not sure if its him or some other teenage boy that got hit Friday? i already posted plenty information about him! We appreciate all your guyses help! Jonathan is now in a better place!

  2. Allan says:

    I almost forgot………………..

    Very Sorry to hear about this young rider. Sounds like he didn’t do a thing wrong and was just taken out by some mindless idiot. My deepest heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of Jonathan. RIP

    • maya says:

      I know the ‘mindless idiot’.I know little details to the story.But im not saying this because i care. just saying.Shes still a ‘mindless idiot’

      • maya says:

        i meant i dont care if u call her a mindless idiot.

      • deborah gallegos says:

        my cousin IS NOT A MINDLESS IDIOT when rescursers arrived they found ana crying as she held him trying to comfort him! she is sweet and loved by everyone she knows im sure if she could take his place she would deborah

        • Reason says:

          Your standing up for your cousin? Why?

        • Viridiana fernandez says:

          Excuse Me But Your Wrong! I’m the sister/cousin of Jonathan Fernandez the cops told us that she was not doing anything about it! she was just helding him in her arms! & apparently she did not now she has just rand some one over until she got of the car and saw that she has just rand over a teen! She was too busy txting & also was intoxicated! Jonathan was a really loving person and did nothing wrong he was just trying to get back home! He left his dad & his sister! She left him Brain Dead, he died that instant moment!

          -Family Fernandez
          *Rest.In.Peace Jonathan Fernandez 2-12-96~6-10-11
          Taken To Young But Never Forgotten ALWAYS In Our Hearts♥!

        • Esmeralda says:

          I’m sorry but no matter what you say she is an IDIOT!! She shouldn’t have been driving drunk especially at that time !! And Viriadianna sorry for the loss of ur brother. God bless you all.

  3. […] a car driving at speeds where the helmet would do absolutely nothing hits and kills a cyclist, and the media reports that the rider “wasn’t wearing a helmet,” continuing to perpetuate this exaggerated belief in the helmet’s protective […]

  4. YR says:

    Next court date is scheduled for Tuesday, June 28th at the Bellflower Court House.

    • Viridiana fernandez says:

      Next Court Is August 19,2011

      • Allan says:

        Can someone tell us what happened today? Also if it’s posted early enough, I can get out there. This is a sad case and would like to be there to lend some support.

  5. Viridiana fernandez says:

    My cousin/brother passed away June 10,2011 at 7:07am. He was at Miller Children’s Hospital for a week and a day! He had many injuries and he was in one of a million percent chance of living! we decide it was better for him too go! he had all his left side broken his hand elbow pelvic and several other stuff! He was brain damage! It was Thursday June 9th,2011 when we had goatten good news about him the good news was that his brain had showed a signal! but Friday morning things go critical around 2am his heart rate dropped! Jonathan Fernandez tried his best too stay alive but his injuries were critical! He left his family happy! and gave his dad good signs that he was goanna be in a better place! Our Family does not have any anger against Ana Chavez! Jonathan was a great kid,student,son,friend! he was a really sweat hearted person and he was loved by many! Jonathan is now in a better place and not suffering no more! JONATHAN MAY. REST.IN.PEACE 2-12-96~6-10-11 GONE BUT NEVER FORGOTTEN!


    • bikinginla says:

      Thank you for sharing with us; it’s important to know Jonathan as more than just a statistic. Please accept my deepest sympathy for your loss.

  6. Pearl gonzalez says:

    to the fernandez family my deepest sympathy for your loss. I happen to know ana chavez personally and I know she would never intentionally hurt anyone. I understand she was under the influence and an accident. No excuse! My sincere sympathy for your loss.

    • bikinginla says:

      Sorry Pearl, but driving under the influence is never an accident. Anyone who gets behind the wheel after drinking or using drugs can and should be held fully accountable for whatever happens afterwards.

      It’s not enough to say “oops” after someone dies.

  7. user1 says:

    A memorial for Jonathan was erected on Alondra Blvd this past Monday. I’m sorry I’m just now posting this. I’m not home but up north, so I’m not at a computer as much, plus it’s a little netbook.

    I hope this driver realizes what she had done. I would live the rest of my life guilt ridden if I killed a 15 year old. I doubt I would want to drive again. Drivers need to start paying the price.

    RIP Jonathan.


  8. Paul Im says:

    Something strange happened when I visit the memorial today so I thought I share.
    I spotted the memorial yesterday. Since I bicycle commute to work around here.
    So I thought pay a visit and give my respect. Which I did today and was heading back and
    As I was in front of the Korean market’s parking lot, a car from street crashed through 2 cars in to the parking lot. really fast. The passengers were running away from the car. But the police got one of the guy. One of the witness thought that he was high on something. and recently I been smelling many car smoking pot while driving quit a bit too. My point is that it is very sad that street is this dangerous. RIP Jonathan.

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