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Longmeadow teen honored by teammates at Thursday night track meet

Longmeadow teen honored by teammates at Thursday night track meet
Published: May. 13, 2022 at 12:07 AM EDT
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LONGMEADOW, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) -The community continues to mourn the loss of a Longmeadow teen, who died in a car accident over the weekend.

Thursday, the Longmeadow Track team participated in its first meet since the death of their teammate, Katarina Boskovic.

The team ran alongside their opponents, Minnechaug High School, in a lap to remember their friend and teammate.

Members of the track community told Western Mass News that Kat was a very special person, who had a positive effect on everyone she met. And her coach said he’s grateful for all of the support he and his team have received from the community.

Members from both the Longmeadow and Minnechaug track teams joined together at their meet on Thursday for the emotional tribute to honor one of their own who died tragically over the weekend.

“There’s no one like her and probably no one will ever be like her,” said Tanner Williams, head coach of Longmeadow Track and Field.

The Hampden District Attorney said that on Saturday, 18-year-old Katarina Boskovic, better known by those close to her as “Kat,” was pronounced dead after an early-morning single-car crash on Green Willow Drive in Longmeadow. Longmeadow Track and Field’s head coach, Tanner Williams, told us Kat was an amazing person.

“When people talk about captains in sport, there’s no other clearer picture than her. Leader by example, leader by talking, fun, always good with a joke, doing silly stuff, keeping morale up, and working hard,” Williams said.

Williams said she had an impact on everyone she met.

“She was just a magnet to people...Other schools, girls that met her half a dozen times at meets that all have showed their support, coaches that have seen her at meets that have all said how much of an effect she had on the rest of them,” said Williams.

Williams confirmed to us another one of their teammates, Shea Hamel, was also a passenger in the car and she suffered serious injuries.

“Not having her has hurt, but that’s been one bright spot is that she’s been doing okay,” said Williams.

And he said he admires the resilience his team has shown.

“Can’t say how please I’ve been with the girls that have taken the reins, doing all the little things like helping with warm-ups or running out in front like Kat would or doing joke or doing something silly just to keep everybody happy and with a smile on their face,” said Williams.

Minnechaug’s athletic director, Mike Roy, told Western Mass News that this tragedy resonated with their athletes and coaches and they wanted to do something special to honor Kat’s memory.

“I left it in the hands of our coaches to decide something classy to do and something appropriate and they settled on that and I supported it,” said Roy.

Roy said even though Longmeadow is usually their athletic rival, the sports community comes together in times like this.

“I was happy that they were coming here, and we were the ones that they were running with the first time,” said Roy.

Runners left lane one open for Kat, symbolizing that she’s with them in their hearts and on the track forever.

Longmeadow Police and the Hampden District Attorney are still investigating the accident and they said charges relating to motor vehicle homicide and operating under the influence will be charged appropriately.

A wake is being held Friday from 4-7 p.m. at Forastiere Smith Funeral Home in East Longmeadow, and funeral services will be held on Saturday starting at 9:30 a.m. at Saint Mary’s Church in Longmeadow.