Candlelight vigil honoring 4 family members killed in golf cart accident in Galveston

GALVESTON, TX (KTRK) — A candlelight vigil was held in Galveston at the same spot where four family members were killed driving a golf cart exactly a week ago.

“Our world has been destroyed and we will never be okay again, but it makes it easier to know that everyone has turned up,” a family member told the crowd.

The community turned out by the dozens at the intersection of 33rd Street and R Avenue, where police say a drunk driver got into the golf cart carrying two grandparents, their three grandchildren and a niece.

The crash killed 49-year-old Felipe Bentancur, his two grandsons, 4-year-old Kaisyn Bentancur and 14-year-old Brailyn Cantu, and his 25-year-old niece Destiny Uvalle.

The grandmother and one of her grandchildren survived the crash.

“No husband, no grandchildren, no niece,” said family member Jessica Lasker.

Miguel Espinoza, described by police as having bloodshot eyes and smelling of alcohol, has been charged with four counts of manslaughter.

The outpouring of support for the family extended to their hometown of Rosenberg on Saturday, where a fundraiser raising money for the family sold out in just three hours.

“I just can’t imagine losing my family like that, it’s just awful,” said one tearful participant.

Earlier in the week, Galveston City Council met to discuss possible changes to the ordinances that regulate golf carts, sparking debate.

“How about you fix the lights out there?” Lasker said. “Maybe put an extra stop sign out there.”

According to records, there have been 32 golf cart accidents on the island since last summer.

According to the Galveston Police Department, there were 604 accidents involving alcohol or drugs between 2018 and 2022.

The family are now suing Espinoza and the bar, where he is accused of being overcharged that night.

Amid grief, anger and heartbreak, family members say community support keeps them happy.

“It’s overwhelming, it’s incredible my brother, he was that guy,” said Ray Bentancur.

A GoFundMe was set up to raise money for the victims.

For updates on this story, follow Brooke Taylor on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Copyright © 2022 KTRK-TV. All rights reserved. Candlelight vigil honoring 4 family members killed in golf cart accident in Galveston

Dais Johnston

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