MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Students at Minnetonka High School are wearing purple Thursday to honor a classmate killed while crossing Highway 7.
“We wanted to show support for a fellow classmate and then to stand together kind of as a class,” said Minnetonka High senior Jack Kiernan.
Seventeen-year-old Scott Berzins, of Shorewood, was crossing the highway at about 6:15 a.m Wednesday. he was just west of the intersection with Highway 101 and outside of the crosswalk when a vehicle headed west struck and killed him. The Minnesota State Patrol says Berzins was not in the intersection when it happened.
A 35-year-old woman from Minneapolis was driving the vehicle that hit him.
Minnetonka Principal Jeff Erickson says the loss impacts the entire community. Classmates and staff are remembering Berzins as a caring friend who loved music. He was known as a talented musician both on the saxophone and the guitar.
Berzins was a member of the school’s elite jazz ensemble for the last two years.
“That was his spot to shine. That’s where he felt comfortable,” Erickson said. “That’s where he found success, so it was pretty amazing.”
It is impossible to know every classmate in such a big school, yet Berzins’ talent made an impression on the community.
“Just a very positive person, and really known for his skills,” Erickson said.
Berzins’ family believes he was crossing the street after picking up a snack from a gas station.
Authorities do not suspect alcohol or drugs were a factor in the crash. The driver is said to be cooperating with the investigation.