Hundreds of mourners gathered this morning to pay a poignant tribute to a popular 14-year-old girl killed in a hit and run accident.

Alessia Boschiazzo Flores, from Carshalton, died in hospital on March 5, exactly one week after she was struck by a car on Morland Road, Croydon.

She was on her way to visit some friends when the accident happened at about 7pm.

More than 300 of Alessia’s classmates, fellow dancers, her family and teachers stood and sat shoulder to shoulder in St Teresa’s Church in Morden to celebrate the life of a beautiful and talented dancer and a treasured friend.

The 14-year-old’s classmates from Ursuline High School in Wimbledon formed an honour guard, walking her ornate white coffin adorned with flowers into the church.

The congregation sang Lord of the Dance in tribute to her prodigious talent as part of the No Limit Dance and Arts Company. Many of her fellow dancers, wearing purple jumpers, were at the church to say goodbye to their friend.

Father John Mulligan presided over the service and spoke about her loyalty and the thousands of happy memories she had left behind.

She was born in Peru in 1996 and then, when she was little, moved to Carshalton with her mother Cecilia, father Aldo and her sister Angela who is now 18.

Fr Mulligan said: “She went to Ursuline High School in Wimbledon where she met a whole new family and a number of friends that would shape and form the next years of her life.” He spoke about the incredible gift of friendship and loyalty she had given everyone she encountered and the thousands of memories her family would come to treasure of her.

He spoke about her love of dancing and her collection of shoes.

Three of her closest friends said a special prayer in which they remembered her “always eager to develop her talents and use her skills and ability for the good”.

Fr Mulligan said: “At 14, the world is on the agenda and tomorrow is the beginning of a whole new adventure.

“Words break down when trying to explain to anyone, why Alessia’s story should come to this.”

As the congregation sang ‘I watch the sunrise’, Alessia’s classmates collected their candles and escorted her coffin out of the church in a procession of light, as her family and friends rose to pay a final farewell to the much loved teenager.

A 21-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving, he has been bailed until May.

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