Family members and friends of the two men who died after a CSUN student suspected of drunk driving collided into the back of their car while stopped at a red light, are keeping their memories alive through social networking Web sites and blogs.
Farzad Etesamifar, 25, of Iran and his cousin, Sepehr Keshavarz, 23, of Reseda died in the early morning hours of June 7 at the intersection of Ventura Boulevard and Densmore Avenue in Encino.
According to Rosa Aldama, her nephew, Etesamifar was living in Iran and visiting Los Angeles with his parents to attend his aunt’s graduation from USC Pharmacy School.
Etesamifar’s father had returned to Iran three days prior to the accident and Etesamifar and his mother were scheduled to leave for Iran the day after the accident.
Aldama said, Keshavarz had moved to Reseda two years prior to pursue his singing career and was in the process of obtaining his U.S. residency.
In an email from Arash Mousavi, a CSUN alumnus who is first cousins to both men, wrote, “His (Keshavarz) life revolved around music.”
According to Mousavi, Keshavarz was talented with playing the piano and guitar that without having any formal training he could watch and listen to someone else play and be able to duplicate the exact tones.
Family members say he was making an album scheduled to be completed by next year.
“Their lives were cut short,” said Aldama. “My heart has broken into pieces and I don’t know how I am going to go on.”
Many of Etesamifar’s close friends stay in contact with each other through Yahoo!360, a social networking Web site. With blogs, photos, lists, recommendations, and many other features they can post comments, pictures and stories.
Amin Ghoncheh, from Iran, who is a close friend of Etesamifar, wanted his life to be remembered and shared. Ghoncheh, along with several other close friends of Etesamifar set up a blog called “Remember him in Happiness,” where people can post a tribute.
Payam Hossaini, an IT developer from Iran, met Etesamifar in college at the Aptech Institute, an IT training school. His Yahoo!360 blog entry for Etesamifar is called “Rest in Peace.”
Hossaini writes via email that there were four of them that were very close in college; Etesamifar, Farhad Saeedi Nejad, Shahin Motevali and himself.
“He (Etesamifar) was always so relaxed,” said Hossaini via email.
“I remember one night we all four were studying for an exam and although there was a lack of time, he seemed so cool,” Hossaini said.
Etesamifar’s older sister Farima set up a Facebook account a few days after the death of the two cousins, said family members. It is a place where family and friends can come together to share their thoughts about the two, said Aldama.
“There are pictures of them both as adults and as children,” said their aunt who would like to remain anonymous.
“Ever since childhood, those two boys have been the best of friends and I am just glad they are together in Heaven,” their aunt said.
In an email from Mousavi, he writes, he will always remember Keshavarz by the way he would end every sentence in Farsi with “Mesle Gorg” which means “Like a Wolf.”
“This was the way he viewed life, like a wolf, he had to go after anything that he wanted and work hard at getting there,” Mousavi writes.
Etesamifar and Keshavarz were buried in Los Angeles at Rose Hills Cemetery, said family members.
Etesamifar’s father Ali from Iran writes in an email, “Farzad was a joyful person a lovely son, a brother, and a true friend. Farzad gave us so much and never expected anything in return. He is honest, responsible and trustworthy. Sepehr touched everyone with his music and soulful singing. His warm voice, poetic songs and his joyful melodies shall never be forgotten by those who heard them.”
Ali Etesamifar went on to write, “Farzad and Sepehr were not only cousins but the best of friends. They grew up together and were ultimately taken together.”
Keshavarz is survived by his mother. He is an only child and his father passed away 17 years ago, said Aldama.
According to Mousavi’s email, Keshavarz’s mother was denied a visa to be able to see her only son’s funeral from the American Consulate in Turkey.
Keshavarz’s mother was previously denied a visa to attend her cousin’s graduation a few weeks prior.
“We are now worried that she (Keshavarz’s mother) will not be allowed to come to the trial, whenever it gets scheduled,” said an aunt who would like to remain nameless.
The July 3 arraignment for CSUN student Sean Martin Mishlof was rescheduled for July 28.
Mishlof has been charged with two counts each of second-degree murder and gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated in the Encino car crash.
If convicted of all charges, Mishlof faces 30 years to life, said District Attorney Spokesperson Sandi Gibbons.
Mishlof remains in jail on a $2 million bond.