Providence school communities raise money for family of 14-year-old drowning victim
Two school communities in Providence are banding together to raise money for the family of a middle school student who drowned while fishing with his family at Beavertail State Park on Sunday.
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WLNE) – Two school communities in Providence are banding together to raise money for the family of a middle school student who drowned while fishing with his family at Beavertail State Park on Sunday.
14-year-old Daniel Carrascoza was fishing with his father and younger brother when he slipped on the rocks and fell into the water. Carrascoza’s father and two Good Samaritans removed him from the water and performed CPR, but were too late.
Carrascoza was transported by Jamestown first responders to Newport Hospital where he was pronounced dead.
“What’s sad is that his younger brother was there to see it,” said Erick Pagan, who was woken up by a phone call from the boy’s mom that evening. “Mom called me around 11:45 p.m. just to inform me of him drowning.”
Pagan is the vice-principal of Veazie Street Elementary School in Providence. He used to work as a teacher at William D’Abate Elementary School where Carrascoza attended grade school.
“It was really tough for me,” Pagan said. “My wife was with me at the time. It was really hard to sleep that night for the both of us. Just now that, being a parent, my girls are only two years old. For me, it sits heavy.”
Carrascoza’s mother volunteers at a local food pantry, Pagan said, and she also served as a volunteer for the after school program at D’Abate. The family became well known in the school community, and even after Carrascoza moved on to middle school at nearby DelSesto Middle School, they remained family friends.
“Daniel was pretty quiet. He loved joking around just like any other kid, he loved playing soccer, he loved sports.”
After his phone call with Carrascoza’s mother, Pagan knew he had to help.
“After speaking with mom, she doesn’t have the means to pay for a funeral and burial.”
He decided to raise money for the family and spread the word on social media. He said teachers and principals at both D’Abate and DelSesto stepped up to donate. Now, he’s hoping that word will spread.
“As a community member I decided to speak with some educational stakeholders and other teachers, we thought about coming together just to support the family, see if we could raise money.”
Pagan said the Carrascoza family is originally from Guatemala and made Providence their home when Daniel was young. He hopes the money will help ease their minds as they mourn their devastating loss.
“People that have come to this country just to seek a better education. I felt in my heart to do that. I felt it in my heart. I heard mom crying on the phone, weeping, and just, it really hit me hard.”
To donate, label your donation “DC Funeral & Burial” and send to @DelSesto-MiddleSchool on Venmo or $DelSestoMiddleSchool on CashAPP.
© WLNE-TV 2020