EULESS (CBSDFW.COM) – Filing past the body of 18-year-old Gaius Vaenuk Friday, a long line of friends said their goodbye’s, then wrapped their arms around his grieving family.
To make room for the crowd, the visitation was held in the auditorium at Trinity High School, where Vaenuku was a popular student athlete. Six brothers and sisters spoke, down to the very smallest.
“Bye, Keio,” whispered the little boy.
Their emotion often crept through.
“Man, this is hard,” said his father, Sam Vaenuku.
Gaius, who went by the nickname, Keio, was in football camp at the University of Utah.
He planned a trip home to surprise his mother.
Friends told her he planned to call her on the phone and ask her to see if a package had been delivered.
“And when I got to the front door, he would be there saying, “Surprise, Mom! I’m home.”
He was on his way, when a rollover crash in New Mexico killed him and two other teens.
His family said he loved being the center of attention, dreamed of being an actor, and left behind countless videos of himself.
Now with hundreds of mourners paying their respects, they know how big of a mark he left behind.
“Keio,you did it, man. You’re a shining star. Look at everyone who came out,” said his brother.
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