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'She was the light': Girl killed after car plunged into Brays Bayou was Milby High School student

Milby students gathered on the softball field Tuesday in honor of 16-year-old Emily Castilleja, the girl killed in Monday's crash.

HOUSTON — A teenage girl who died after crashing through a guardrail over Brays Bayou Monday was a student-athlete at Milby High School, the school said Tuesday.

They identified the victim as 16-year-old Emily Castilleja. She played softball for Milby.

“She always picked my spirits up when I was always mad or sad," said teammate Trinity Gonzales. "And she was always there for me – she was that person – she was the light."

Students gathered on the softball field Tuesday where they released blue, yellow and white balloons in honor of Emily. Several bouquets of flowers were placed below a photo of the teen.

RELATED: Teen dead after vehicle crashes into bridge, plunges into Brays Bayou

"Fly with the angels, baby girl," Milby's principal said. 

“She was a great kid, man – really kind heart – she was just a real hard worker, as well, and just a joy to be around," said Milby teacher and coach Jose Chavez.

Emily would have finished her sophomore year today.

The Houston Fire Department dive team found the vehicle after witnesses reported it had plunged into the bayou from the Harrisburg bridge, not far from the eastside school. They found Emily trapped inside, but it was too late to save her. HPD divers later recovered her body.

Two teens who were passengers in the vehicle survived the crash. HFD paramedics rescued a 17-year-old girl who was taken to an area hospital, according to HPD. A 17-year-old boy who was in the back seat managed to free himself and swim to safety.

Houston police said the black BMW was traveling at a high rate of speed when it crashed through the railing just after 1 p.m.

There were workers nearby who saw the crash happen and attempted to rescue the teens but were unable to do so.

Milby High School sent the following letter home to parents:

"This is an important message for Milby parents and students from Principal Pena. I have sad news to report to you. One of our students died today while off campus. As you can imagine, this is a terribly difficult time for our school community. As such, counselors will be available on campus to provide support to students and staff and answer any questions they might have. They will remain available for as long as they are needed."

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