SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (KSAZ) - Two weeks after a horrific crash took the life of Horizon High School senior Joe Smith, hundreds gathered to celebrate him.
"He was all about America, he was all about his hard rock, his medal..." Joe's friend, Cameron, said.
The celebration was the most appropriate way for Cameron to remember a friend he's known since the first grade.
"I just wanted to wear some stuff that he would love," Cameron said.
Eighteen-year-old Joe Smith loved his friends. All of them, along with family, gathered for a memorial service at Horizon High School on Monday, but first, Cameron and another friend from childhood, Robbie, stood outside.
They all remembered the good times, with some hanging on a memorial that's grown day-by-day since the morning of June 17th, when everyone heard the news.
"Joe had a big impact on this community and his parents are now seeing the impact he had," one person at the memorial said.
Joe and his three friends were driving back from a senior trip to California when they were involved in a pileup on Interstate 10 near Quartzite. Joe died in the crash and others were badly injured.
The pain of the injuries along with the pain of knowing their friend is gone is a reality that's slowly sinking in, especially for Joe's family.
"The community is really carrying them through this," Cameron said.
That support is what the memorial was all about; reminding the Smith family that their son won't ever be forgotten.
"This is really what they get for closure, all of the community coming and sharing their thoughts and giving them their love, what Joe gave them," Cameron said.