ELLENTON, Fla. — The Manatee County community remembers a 17-year-old who was hit and killed by an alleged drunk driver.
GayLee Steele said her son Mikeal was on his motorcycle and headed home on Sunday around 8 p.m.
Florida Highway Patrol arrested David Shanks for DUI manslaughter. Troopers said he made a left turn into the path of Mikeal’s motorcycle.
According to court records, his eyes appeared glossy and his breath smelled like alcohol.
Flowers mark the spot where the crash happened on US 301 and 42nd Avenue Drive East in Manatee County.
“I didn’t think it was real. I thought I was in a movie when you hear someone dying like that you’re like ‘no, there’s no way possible, it can’t be him’ and we finally figured out it was,” said friend Josiah Parks.
Mikeal attended Parrish Community High School, he played football and soccer. Friends remember him as kind and dedicated.
“There would be days, he’d come to school, go to football practice, go to work until 10:30, come home, go to sleep and do it all over again the next day,” said friend Raegan Massey.
Employees at the nearby Shake Station heard the crash happen and saw flames.
Shake Station owner Andy Ameres said the community is hosting a night to honor the teen. It’s called “A Night for Steele.”
About 20 businesses in Manatee County will donate a portion of its proceeds on a set date to the Steele family.
“I know money won’t bring back Mikeal or anything like that, but it’s just a little bit of something that we can do as a community to help their immediate family,” said Andy Ameres.
Ameres said he has seen multiple crashes over the years on US 301. He wants to see a traffic light or stop sign at the intersection. He created an online petition.
“We would really like to see an intersection like this to have a signal here, traffic light or something in honor of Mikeal to save many lives to come in the future,” said Ameres.
Below is a complete list of the restaurants participating in “A Night for Steele.”
- Sea Hut/Crab Trap 10/30 from 5pm-9pm
- Shake Station 11/2 from 5 pm-9 pm
- Chili’s 6010 Us 301 N Ellenton, Fl 34222 11/3 from 5pm-9pm. This will be takeout & curbside only.
- Ferraro’s Italian Grille 11/4 from 5 pm-9 pm
- TK Grill & Barbecue 11/5 from 5pm-9pm
- Ricky Gullett (Gulley’s) next to Sunny Tomatoes) 11/6 from 3 pm-7 pm
- Popi’s Place Port Manatee 11/7 from 4 pm-8 pm
- Butterfields Restaurant 11/8 from 7 am-11 am
- Popi’s Place Downtown Palmetto 11/9 from 4 pm-8 pm
- Popi’s Place Ellenton 11/10 from 4 pm-8 pm
- Chumlee’s Wings 11/11 from 4 pm-8 pm
- BubbaQue’s BBQ-Bradenton 11/15 from 5pm-9pm
- Sonny’s BBQ 11/16 from 5 pm-9 pm
- Subz-N-Grubz 11/17 from 4 pm-8 pm
- Hickory Hollow 11/18 from 4 pm-8 pm