Six good reasons not to drink and drive.
From left to right, My brother in law Gary, his daughter Clarissa, son Caleb, who were hurt. Wife Cheryl who was killed. Son Ian killed, daughter Julieanna killed.
Please please do not drink and drive. When you do real people with real families die
MURRAY — A mother and two children from Cedar Hills, Utah County, were killed early Sunday when their car was struck by a pickup truck that police said ran a red light. Carlos Rodolfo Prieto Police say the truck's 24-year-old driver was intoxicated.
Cheryl L. Ceran, 47, and her 15-year-old son, Ian Ceran, were pronounced dead at the scene of the 2:24 a.m. crash, at the intersection of 5400 South and 700 West, said Murray Police Sgt. Paul Christiansen.
Ceran's 7-year-old daughter, Julinna Ceran, was flown by helicopter to Primary Children's Medical Center, where she later died.
Three members of the Ceran family survived the collision. The husband, 45-year-old Gary J. Ceran, sustained minor injuries. The couple's 12-year-old son, Caleb Ceran, and 18-year-old daughter, Clarissa Ceran, also suffered non-life-threatening injuries.
A friend said the family had just stopped at Wal-Mart for some late-night Christmas shopping after attending the cast party for the Hale Centre Theatre's production of "A Christmas Carol" in West Valley City. Gary Ceran played the role of Bob Cratchit in the production, and both Caleb and Clarissa had smaller roles in the play.
"It has completely demolished everyone's Christmas," Sally Dietlein, Hale Centre Theatre executive producer, told the Deseret Morning News Sunday. "The real tough part of this is, before the events of last night, they had already lost five children to various illnesses, so this is something that is almost more than you can even think is possible. So from 11 (in the family), there are now only three.
"The understanding the (surviving) kids tend to have is that the mother was needed to take care of the other children in heaven."
Cheryl Ceran was driving the family's passenger car eastbound on 5400 South. They were about a half mile from the entrance to southbound I-15, which would take them home to Cedar Hills. The pickup truck was headed northbound on 700 West when it ran the red light and hit the Mercury, Christiansen said.
The driver of the 1997 pickup, Carlos Rodolfo Prieto, 24, was not seriously hurt.
Christiansen said he was booked into the Salt Lake County Jail on three felony counts of vehicular homicide and was expected to be also charged with three misdemeanors — driving under the influence, driving without a license and running a red light.
Murray police detective Kenny Bass said Prieto has no known criminal record. His place of residence was unknown at press time Sunday night.
Dietlein said she was told the three family members who died were sitting in the front seat and the three survivors were in the back seat.
"The car kind of collapsed around Clarissa and caused a lot of stress to her legs, (but) as we understand it there is nothing broken there, just probably some trauma. She has been in a lot of pain. They had to really work to get her out of" the vehicle, she said.
"Gary, the father, is up, he's out of the hospital and he's working to take care of the two other kids, who are in two different hospitals. And as of today, they (Clarissa and Caleb) are going to be fine."
In the Hale Centre Theatre's production, Clarissa played the role of Elizabeth, one of the young girls from Ebenezer Scrooge's past. Caleb played Scrooge as a young boy and also doubled as a Cratchit child.
"The nurses at Primary Children's were in tears today," said Dietlein, who visited with the survivors Sunday. "The doctor who had to explain to the father what had happened (to 7-year-old Julinna) said it was the hardest thing she'd ever had to do.
Dietlein said the Cerans do not have any family members who live in Utah. But she said Caleb told her that his uncle, his father's brother, had flown in from California on Sunday to help Gary Ceran pick up the pieces of what has been a challenging life.
"They have a strong network of friends," Dietlein said, adding that she is sure some sort of fund will be set up to help the three surviving family members.
"This family has been through a tremendous amount of heartache," she said.
Dietlein said Clarissa told her Sunday that she had never known anyone more mature for his age than her 15-year-old brother, Ian. Indeed, all of the Ceran children are mature beyond their years because of the hardships they have endured, Dietlein said.
Dietlein said Gary Ceran worked for a long time as an accountant for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints but is now working for a private company. She said Cheryl Ceran had been homeschooling Caleb.
The family previously lived in South Jordan before moving to Utah County.
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