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Woman Killed in Traffic Accident Hours After Her Graduation

June 8, 2009 — Just a few hours after her high school graduation ceremony, 18-year-old Karence DeCosta was killed Monday in an early morning car accident on St. Thomas.
The graduating Charlotte Amalie High School senior — and this year's St. Thomas Carnival Queen — was driving home from mid island toward the West End sometime around 2:15 a.m. Monday when she lost control of her vehicle on Veteran's Drive and slammed into a pole, according to preliminary information from Police Commissioner-designee Novelle Francis Jr. and information from DeCosta's friends.
The car hit the wall and railing near the Edward Wilmoth Blyden Marine Terminal before striking the concrete base of a light pole, according to a Police Department press release. The car came to rest near the seaplane shuttle.
DeCosta was killed on impact, and was pronounced dead at the scene.
A male passenger inside the car was not injured, the release said. VIPDs Traffic Bureau is investigating the incident.
Expressing his condolences to DeCosta's friends, family and supporters, Francis described the young girl's death as a tragedy.
"The entire V.I. community has lost one of their best and brightest shining stars," he said. "It is a tragedy that the potential of this talented and intelligent young lady will never be fulfilled."
DeCosta was, among other things, an avid and passionate singer, whose beautiful voice could fill a room — and most recently, a stadium, as she brought the crowd to its feet at Queen Show with a combination of songs that included a tribute to President Barack Obama. A native of St. Kitts and Nevis, DeCosta planned to attend North Carolina A&T State University, according to her classmates, many of whom said they have been on the phone since about 3 a.m., spreading the news and talking about the incident.
CAHS' senior class graduated at 5 p.m. Sunday, during a ceremony held at the UVI Sports and Fitness Center.
The Source will provide more information on the incident once additional details become available.

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