A teenage boy was killed and his girlfriend seriously injured after being hit by a train in Marysville, California.
Mateus Moore and Mickayla Friend, both 16, were on their way to a high school dance when they were struck by the Union Pacific train at around 7pm on Friday night.
According to witnesses, Mr Moore pushed his girlfriend out of the way at the last minute, before he was dragged under the train.
Ms Friend was airlifted to Sutter Roseville hospital, but her boyfriend was pronounced dead at the scene, according to authorities.
It remains unclear why the young couple did not hear the train’s warning horn as it approached them from behind.
Shawn Stark, who witnessed the accident from a nearby Little League basketball game, told Fox40.com: “When the train was on the other side of the trestle, it was going ‘beep beep’.
“But when it got closer, it just laid on the horn. The horn didn’t stop. It must have been 30 seconds long. Then, they finally turned around, he pushed her, and he went under and she hit the corner of the train.”
Ms Friend’s sister Alithya, told KCRA.com: 'It's her first boyfriend and her first love. And she just got it taken away from her in an instant.'
On Sunday, hundreds of people gathered at Earle Yorton Little League Park for a candlelit vigil in memory Mr Moore.
Marysville Police Chief David Baker said an investigation into why the pair did not see, hear or feel the vibrations of the slow-moving train is on-going.
“We just don’t know,” he said.
“We don’t know what distractions had been in place. We just have no information on that at this point in time.”