Nate Ford. Photo by William Lange

Friends of the family of the Maricopa teen who died in a traffic collision Friday morning have opened a memorial account in his name.

With permission from the family to publicize his name, the Nate Ford Memorial Fund was established at Wells Fargo by  friends of the Ford family. The fund is to be used by the family for a memorial or the funeral service, which is planned for next week.

Individuals who would like to do something for the family can go into any Wells Fargo branch and ask about the Nate Ford Memorial Fund to donate, or use account 2721374524.

Nate, 16, was a linebacker in football and a catcher on the Maricopa High School baseball team. He was a Boy Scout, and was already an established leader at 15. He was described as compassionate, smart, faithful and had an infectious smile. He was a good kid and a nice guy.

Nate Ford seemed least likely to leave a trail of sadness behind him. But his untimely death left a school, a church and a city in mourning.

Nate was on his way to school, driving his recognizable white truck, when he collided with a semi truck hauling cattle Friday morning.

MHS quickly had counselors available for friends and teammates as word spread about what had happened at the intersection of State Route 347 and Farrell Road. The football team canceled practice and instead had a team meeting to help each other face the tragedy.

The night before, he had been on the field as the Rams football team scrimmaged to prepare for the first game of the season.

A funeral for Nate Ford is planned for Aug. 29 at 10 a.m. at the stake center for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints at 37280 W. Bowlin Road.

Besides the memorial fund, a fund-raiser already planned for the Miss City of Maricopa Scholarship Foundation at Zoyo Yogurt on Aug. 22-23 from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. will also give 15 percent of its funds to the Fords.

Freelancing for InMaricopa.com last week, photographer William Lange captured individual shots of the Maricopa Rams football team, including Nate Ford, as they prepared for the new season. Also a teacher, Lange had taught Nate in middle school, and Friday’s events left him devastated as well. But his image of Nate struck a chord with many in Maricopa, and we are grateful to be able to share it.

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