A funeral for a 20-year-old Wyckoff man who was killed in a fiery motorcycle crash while being chased by police earlier this week is scheduled for Friday.
Mourners were asked to gather at 10:30 a.m. Friday at Santangelo Funeral Home, 300 Main Street in Lodi for the funeral for Frank Lavato. A private cremation will follow.
Born in Teaneck and raised in Wyckoff, Lovato managed the family business, LaSalle Landscaping and Construction in Hackensack.
"I keep hoping to wake up from this nightmare but the truth is, you’re gone," wrote Lavato's girlfriend of six years, Lizza Thoma of Franklin Lakes. "I wish I could have one last moment with you just to see that smile that lights up a room.
"I love you more than stars in the sky or grains of sand on every beach.”
A marked Clifton police unit was chasing Lovato when he crashed at Broad Street and Van Houten Avenue around 2 a.m., responders told Daily Voice.
Police conducted CPR, to no avail, they said.
Firefighters were summoned for an extrication from the other vehicle in the crash.
Passaic County Prosecutor Camelia Valdes’s Office took control of the investigations into both Lovato’s death and the pursuit.
As of early Thursday evening, she hadn’t released any details.
“Speaking [as] a mother who has a 21-year-old son who just purchased a motorcycle, my heart truly goes out to Christie [Molta] and Frank [Lovato],” one woman wrote in tribute. “I don't know how I would ever get through something like this. I really don't.
“This poor kid was only 20 years old and from what I understand he was being chased and he kept riding because he did not have a motorcycle license. So senseless, so ridiculous.
“From what I understand, they are supposed to back off any high-speed chase that could potentially hurt the person they are chasing,” she added "And if it was just for the lack of a motorcycle license, they already had the license plate of the motorcycle. How hard would it be to follow up the next day?”
Besides his parents, he leaves a brother, Nicholas Lovato; a sister, Marissa Molta; grandparents Frank and Elaine Lovato; aunts and uncles Elisa and Paul Chadwick and Vanessa and Michael Young; and his girlfriend of more than six years, Lizzy Thoma of Franklin Lakes.
“You are so handsome, had so much to live for,” wrote a friend of the man known as “Frankie.”
Visiting hours were being held at the funeral home Thursday night until 8 p.m.
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