Remembering Matthew Batchie


Riverview High School Student Matthew Batchie was killed and erica ross is still recovering from injuries after they were struck by a car last weekend.

Friends and Family gathered Friday night to remember and celebrate Matt’s life. Trucks revved and kicked up mud at Twin Lakes Park in Sarasota, for 16-year-old Matthew Batchie

“It’s kind of funny it’s raining right now, because Matt loved the mud races, so this is his way of telling us to get dirty and roll in the mud, and he’s probably cracking up because he was always the fun one.”

Batchie loved having fun with friends, off-roading, and racing with Florida Trail Riders. And tonight family, friends, and racers from all over Florida came to remember Matt in the way he would have wanted.

“Matthew like being outside, being, muddy, and just messing around would be his idea of like a perfect time.”

“We brought Flowers into the hospital for his family and for him, and we all knew he’s probably sitting there laughing, because he’s like are you really bringing me flowers, he’s one of the last kids that would ever want flowers.”

So wearing his racing color Orange, his friends organized a truck rodeo in honor of him.

“Matt had a big passion for his truck that was just a big project throughout his life, and all of his friends basically all we do is we have fun, get dirty, and honestly on a day like this it’s perfect.”

“It’s like a nice way to kind of just remember him, and have all the friends and family together and just be together because it’s really important to have support at a time like this.”

And celebrate the time they got to spend with him.

“We were so incredibly lucky to have him in our lives and to have those moments with him,” “So it’s more of like a memory of him and how awesome he was not to say goodbye.”
A Vigil will be held to remember Matt tomorrow night at 6 at Siesta Key Beach, and guests are asked not to bring balloons.

And a Go-Fund me page has been set up to raise money for medical expenses for Erica Ross.

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Samantha Sonner
Multimedia Journalist Samantha Sonner comes to the Suncoast from Las Cruces, New Mexico, where she worked as a reporter and host for KRWG TV/FM reporting on local politics, immigration, and border issues. Samantha grew up on Long Island, New York. She received her Bachelor of Science in Broadcast and Digital Journalism from Syracuse University. At Syracuse, she worked at WAER, the campus NPR station and interned at television stations in Central New York. Samantha is excited for the Florida Sunshine, and to be living so close to fantastic beaches. Feel free to follow her on Facebook and Twitter for story updates and news, or to send her story tips and ideas. You can also email her at