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Dillon Renard helps friends light candles during a vigil on Stacy Boulevard in Gloucester last night in memory of Nathaniel Holscher, who was killed in a car accident on Route 128.

GLOUCESTER — A Gloucester resident killed Sunday morning in a car accident 18 days after his 18th birthday was mourned yesterday evening during an impromptu candlelight vigil on Stacy Boulevard.

As friends turned out to comfort his family in Gloucester, Nathaniel James Holscher was remembered as an accomplished swimmer who often worked out at various YMCAs on the North Shore.

Monday evening, from 4 to 7, despite the frigid weather, family and friends held a vigil on Stacy Boulevard, moving in and out of cars and drinking coffee to stay warm. They remembered the youth's humor and love of shopping.

Nate, as he was known, loved the number 18, and died 18 days after his 18th birthday, said his friend Matt Pereira, who knew the teen for four to five years.

"He's the funniest kid I ever met," friend Dillon Renard said. He said Holscher loved fashion and shopping, especially in New York and on Boston's Newbury Street. "If you wanted to find him, he was at the mall."

Marcus Vialpando, who grew up with Holscher and said they'd been friends since the fifth grade, also noted the teen's love of shopping and that he liked going tanning and working out at the gym.

Holscher, who was listed as a Lowell resident by state police but who according to his mother grew up in and continued to reside in Gloucester on Mount Pleasant Avenue, died Sunday from injuries sustained in a single-car accident on Route 128 in Danvers.

According to a state police statement, troopers from the Danvers barracks responded to the crash along Route 128 southbound in Danvers near the Route 62 exit at 12:03 Sunday morning.

State police said Holscher was driving a 2000 Volvo station wagon that rolled over and he was ejected, suffering serious injuries.

Holscher was transported to Beverly Hospital by a medical helicopter, and around 2:50 a.m. at the hospital he was pronounced dead, police said.

"State police are investigating speed as a possible factor in the crash," state police said. "Also under investigation is whether the victim was wearing a seat belt."

No other cars were involved in the crash.

The state police's collision analysis reconstruction and crime scene services teams were assisting in the investigation. Also assisting at the scene were the Danvers Police and Fire departments and the state Department of Traffic Highway Division.

Route 128 southbound was completely closed for almost one hour and 45 minutes while the investigation was completed, and traffic was diverted onto Exit 21.

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