Friends, coaches remember victim in deadly crash


Two men on the side of the I-25 were changing a tire Tuesday night when Sandoval County deputies said a drunk mother veered off the interstate, striking and killing them.

Those two men were Michael Chambellan, 21, and Lonnie Escovedo, 28.

KRQE News 13 spoke with friends, family and coaches of one of the men, Chambellan.

Friends of the 21-year-old said he went by Mikey. They said he was a hard worker, who loved wrestling and fixing up cars.

Ben Hamrich, is one of Chambellan’s childhood friends. He was the one to deliver the tragic news to others, like Michael Espinoza.

“As soon as I got the call, I heard just specific words and didn’t even believe it,” Espinoza said.

In fact, the two said Wednesday, not much more has really sank in.

“He didn’t deserve this,” Hamrich said. “He had the best soul. He was always helping others. That’s the way his whole family.”

Espinoza worked with Chambellan at Sadie’s. He graduated from Sandia High School in 2015. They say he was a tough competition and never liked to lose.

KRQE News 13 spoke with one of his former wrestling coaches, David Holland. He echoed the same things about the 21-year-old.

“He always had a smile on his face,” Holland said. “Like I said he was an aide in my special needs class. He was so great with them and never treated them any different than his other friends.”

The two became so close, Chambellan was the first person to find out the name Coach Holland picked for his son.

“He’s connected with my family. We named my son, actually, Mikey and he got a huge kick out of that,” Holland said. 

Everyone had the same thing to say about Chambellan, that he spent his life helping others.

So, no one was shocked to find out that’s exactly what he left to do last night, help Escovedo, who was his girlfriend’s brother, change a tire.

KRQE News 13 has also been working to talk to the friends and family of Lonnie Escovedo, but they said it was too soon to talk.

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