"He will be incredibly missed and we are incredibly heart-broken," said Kelly Lara, the principal of Kipp Collegiate Academy in San Lorenzo.
Traffic backed up on Grant Ave waiting for railroad to separate the mile long train and reopen road. pic.twitter.com/5EKurFmqDf— Eric Thomas (@ericthomaskgo) May 3, 2017
Lara spoke to reporters just minutes after breaking the news to students that one of their classmates was killed.
"He had a big heart and he was able to earn the support and loyalty of everyone around him," said Lara.
The 16-year-old junior was riding his bike along the tracks on his was to school at about 8:00 a.m. Wednesday morning. That's the same time that a mile-long Union Pacific train came through heading southbound near Grant Avenue.
Part of train that hit and killed a high school student in San Lorenzo. He may have been riding bike on trestle. pic.twitter.com/PuwcvECYVR— Eric Thomas (@ericthomaskgo) May 3, 2017
"We understand that he did not hear the train coming up from behind him and by the time he did hear it was too late," said Sergeant Ray Kelly with the Alameda County Sheriff's office.
The young victim's name has not been released. Officials will only say he was an honor student with a 4.0 grade point average, who was taking all advanced placement courses.
Police are now sending out a warning about the dangers of riding on the tracks.
Train vs pedestrian fatal in San Lorenzo. Traffic blocked at Grant Ave and Bockman Rd. pic.twitter.com/4H2XuGSaeq— Eric Thomas (@ericthomaskgo) May 3, 2017
"Please stay off the railroad tracks. There is nothing good that comes from traversing or taking a shortcut through the railroad tracks," said Sergeant Kelly.
Police are investigating whether the victim was wearing ear buds or anything that could have affected his hearing.