Friends and family hold a vigil for boy killed in Gastoina crash

- A boy that was killed in a car crash in Gastonia this week remains in the hearts and minds of those that knew him.

Maquel McMullen, 11, died Wednesday. Highway Patrol tells FOX 46 Charlotte he was in a SUV that hit a telephone pole. Officials say he was not wearing seatbelt.

Friends and family held a vigil in his memory Saturday evening at Martha Rivers Park in Gastonia.

"He was perfect. He was very popular. You had to meet him once and you were instantly his best friend,” said Cheyenne Burnett, a friend.

People honored Maquel by writing messages on a pair of his roller skates because skating was a passion of his. The vigil also included a balloon release.

The driver, Jason Eugene Pruitt, 24, is charged with careless and reckless driving, operating a vehicle without a license, not wearing a seat-belt, one count of misdemeanor death by motor vehicle, one count felony of involuntary manslaughter, and two counts child abuse.

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