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May 16, 2011

Former cyclist dies in brutal accident

Ariel Rosado

Tonight, family, friends and the cycling community are grieving the immeasurable loss of young Ariel Rosado. The twenty-eight year old was killed in a terrible traffic accident just before midnight on Saturday. It happened at the roundabout near SMART when Rosado and his cycling friend Marlon Castillo were heading into the City. Rosado, a National Road Champ himself, was also well known to this station, having appeared as co-host on our morning show and more recently as a special commentator during Holy Saturday’s Cross Country coverage. Rosado, the son of former K.H.M.H. C.E.O., Dr. Alvaro, and Dorla Rosado, was employed at the law firm Courtenay Coye since 2008 as an Attorney in Training. News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.

Winston Swift, Best Friend of Ariel Rosado

Winston Swift

“At no time I would have thought that [and] even watching the vehicle crashing into the cement wall I thought you know what me and Ariel [Rosado] wah laugh bout this and tell Marlon [Castillo] bwai yoh mess up yoh truck and at no time I thought that he would have been dead.”

Isani Cayetano, Reporting

An evening of socializing amongst best friends turned tragic on Saturday around eleven p.m. when former cyclist and budding attorney Ariel Rosado became the unfortunate victim of a fatal traffic accident near mile two on the Northern Highway.

Winston Swift

“We were coming down.  We were hanging out at a house, you know.  I was in a vehicle behind the [Toyota] Tacoma, well I was in front of the Tacoma actually before the accident occurred.  I looked back [and] I saw the Tacoma coming and it overtook us [so] I told my friend who was driving the vehicle to pull on the side that we were on and let the Tacoma go We were approaching the roundabout and I didnt see how at that speed it would take the roundabout so I gave them as much space.  I asked him [the driver of the vehicle] to give them as much space and he pulled on the side and the Tacoma passed us and it slammed into the fence.  [It] went up, came down and then finally it stopped at the median.”

The driver of the vehicle, twenty-three year old Marlon Castillo, a fellow cyclist with whom Rosado had been a passenger lost control of his pickup which careened violently off the traffic circle and hitting this concrete fence before coming to rest moments later.  His best friend Winston who was following in a separate vehicle was the first respondent.

Winston Swift

“I quickly rushed over to the vehicle and the driver, Marlon Castillo, he just kept yelling to me that aux stick, the aux stick, the accelerator, the aux stick so I said okay [and I asked] wheres Ariel and he said Ariel is in the vehicle.  And I quickly ran and got him out of there and I put him in the vehicle and sent him to the hospital.”

Despite their effort to immediately transport Rosado to the K.H.M.H. the twenty-eight year old would not survive the massive cranial impact he received during the collision.  Ariel Rosado succumbed to his injuries less than an hour later.

Marlon Castillo

Ariel Rosado, Deceased (File: April 23rd, 2011)

“This is Ariel Rosado reporting for Channel Five from the start of the 2011 Cross Country Cycling Classic and we thank you for staying in tune with us and please continue staying tuned.  Well have full coverage for you.  Saying goodbye from the start and well pick it up in a few minutes.”

Baby Jamis, as he was known amongst his colleagues, rose to prominence in the late nineties with veteran cyclist Santiago Castillo Jr. as his mentor.

Santiago Castillo Jr., Former Coach, Jamis

Santiago Castillo Jr

“He surprised the entire cycling world in Belize when he beat Quinton [Hamilton] in the 2000 New Years Krem Classic and stamped his authoritativeness in cycling with that victory.  He later won the National Road Championship, I want to believe the year was 2001 and or 2002.  But Ariel was the consummate team player and he and Jawmaine were the one-two punch.”

Ariel Rosado (File: March 28th, 2002)

“At times it’s rough because you have to sacrifice yourself, you have to work for others at times. But at other times it pays off, they work for you, you get the victory at times, so it can be rough at times. But like they keep on reminding me on this team, I’m still young, so for now I can sacrifice myself for men like Jawmaine or the seniors and then in two years time it’ll be my turn when the team starts to work me and I can start to be the victor of the races, so it’s worth it.”

Winston Swift

“Well, I met Ariel Rosado in high school; it was [in] third form, you know, I was into cycling but not a professional cyclist.  [I] just liked riding and I always wanted to end up riding with Ariel in a race and I had my chance in high school and we were kind of like rivals, you know.  I always wanted to beat him but I wasnt nowhere around his caliber of riding so in third form I actually met up with Ariel and we became good friends from since third form, fourth form, sixth form.  After sixth form, him going to study, coming back, working and we just kept a very close relationship.”

…a close relationship which ended in disaster.  Castillo, who wasn’t seriously injured, has since been served a notice of intended prosecution.  Meanwhile Belize City police continue their investigation into the accident. Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

Castillo was formally arraigned this afternoon on a slew of charges; Manslaughter by Negligence, Causing Death by Careless Conduct, Driving Motor Vehicle without Due Care and Attention, Driving Motor Vehicle with Alcohol Concentration Above the Prescribed Limit and Driving an Unlicensed Motor Vehicle. The case was adjourned until June sixteenth and Castillo was granted bail of five thousand dollars. He is being represented by Attorney Richard “Dickie” Bradley.

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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43 Responses for “Former cyclist dies in brutal accident”

  1. toni tone says:

    really sad. we need to crack down on drunk driving, and speeding….RIP Ariel :(

  2. risu says:

    Sad. Both news stations didn’t even mention the problems Toyota had with the stuck accelerators. It has happened to me on a Hilux before, fortunately no one got harmed. My condolences to both families.

  3. Shy says:

    U will be missed.

  4. Eda Chavarria says:

    Mr & Mrs Rosado You and your family are in my prayer. Marlon I feel for you son. You and and your family are also in my prayers. Accidents happen and I pray that the scar from this one will heal quickly. Let the memories you shared with Ariel take you through this.
    To drivers out there “drive with care and precaution” You never know what could go wrong and if you are drinking and have to drive go slowly.

  5. Edith says:

    What a loss – He was not only a GREAT athlete, he was a positive person and an asset to society :-)

  6. shabba says:

    there was a recall on a number of toyota vehicles in the states because of a possibility of pedal malfunction.

  7. Chance says:

    Driving under the influence is always a problem and cause death. However Toyota had a recall on this accelerator problem last year. Sue Toyota for this accident.

  8. Do it right says:

    Rest in Peace my friend. Such a tragic loss for this society.

  9. LARGE AND SEXY says:


  10. Sharry says:

    Truly a sad news Ariel will be missed he really was a positive smart and ambitious person

  11. RedGyal Belize says:

    WOW…My Belizean People what will it take for you guys to understand that drinking and driving don’t go together and trying to over take another vehicle, you have heard this time and time again. And I am sure that seat belts were not worn and air bags did not deploy. Belize please try to enforce more strick driving laws don’t just pass the laws ENFORCE THEM!!!. RIP Ariel…Praying for both families!!!

  12. Sasha says:

    RIP, Toyota has recalled and is still recalling more vehicles because of accelerator/brakes so check it out, depends on the yr and model.

  13. says:

    it’s really sad mein ! what to say? just trust GOD He has all the answers and the Power to get us through this.
    As a young driver I’m trying to piece this puzzle…. guest I never will. None of us would have want this to happen. A hard asit might be lets show the Rosado family and Marlon the love we wish we could be showing Ariel—they will need it today, tomorrow and for ever we love you. Prayers! Prayers! Prayers! Prayers!…

  14. Sunshine says:

    It is sad when you are blamed in the cause of death of a close friend. Marlon is not at fault here I think the Toyota was at fault. Blame the recall on Toyota and let Marlon walk away with some dignity, I think he is punishing enough with just the thought of the accident and the death of his friend. My condolences to both family and I hope that Marlon can find some peace in himself and know that he could not have avoided what happen I dont believe his alcohol level had anything to do with it. It could have happened if a sober person was driving. RIP Ariel.

  15. Inglebert says:

    rip rosado the good ones always go early

  16. Nightlife says:

    Do we have police driving on the streets looking out for speeding? I know we’re underresourced, but since traffic accidents are the #2 cause of death in Belize, it would probably be something to consider.

  17. CeCe says:

    My poor baby is gone, but he had a good life. He had great spirits, an awesome personality and a pleasure to be around! He always used to say “I rule the world, the world is mine.” Ariel, I do believe that you did with your positive outlook on life and the inspiration you gave to others. I will always love you and keep you in my heart and mind. Rest in peace my darling and we will see you again!!

  18. Elgin Martinez says:

    This story makes no sense whatsoever.Where is the Police Press Officer?Can we hear the other version of this story.

  19. HANZ says:

    Every ody is talking about the Toyota recall but they forget to mention that the recall was for that particular model year. I think it was 2009 or 2010 model year Toyotas. I don’t know but I wonder whether Castilo’s Tacoma was a 2009 or 2010 model if not then something else might have caused the accident other than a stuck accelerator. Anyways its sad that a young man who was just begining his career as a budding lawyer is dead. condolences to his fam because losing a loved one is the worst experiece especially through tragic circumstances

  20. JESSICA says:


  21. Zoe says:

    Please start checking on vehicles being brought into the country to be sold!!! Vehicles being recalled are being sold in the black market and brought over to countries like ours! Let the third world uncivilized people kill themselves mentality!

    Do a story on vehicles brought in to be sold. Who monitors that they are not recalled vehicles from other countries before being imported and registered?

  22. Kim says:

    One thing I didn’t really appreciate was his friend Winston when they were interviewing him for the news, why the laughter???? I mean I know they say we should be happy because he is with the Lord and Saviour, but am sure his parents was watching the news and to me it was no laughing matter, he could have been serious and tried answering the questions with respect to the family grieving. RIP Ariel, you were an escort for 1 of my bridesmaids at my wedding back in 2000 and I am honored to know that you shared in that occasion with us. Sleep on……….

  23. BT says:

    According to PLUS-TV, the Rosado family issued a statement asking that other young people learn from this tragedy and not let their son die in vain…. and yet here people are trying to blame the vehicle, make excuses to condone drunk driving, ignoring the fact that Castillo was racing the other vehicle, neglecting to admit that a seat belt could have saved this life etc. What these people are in fact doing IS letting Ariel die in vain. It’s a tragic loss to his friends, family, and community… but lets face the facts and learn from this tragic event rather than make excuses!

    Don’t drink and drive (not even “slowly” as Eda recommends, smh), don’t speed, race, or drive recklessly, and ALWAYS wear your seat belt in a moving vehicle.

  24. Justice says:

    So sad that a life of such a young person as ended. My condolences to the family. It is a harsh lesson but when will peple learn not to drink and drive?

  25. Jose Chacon says:

    Really sad to see a youngman with a great future ahead leave. Indeed, hopefully there is a way to confirm that the accelerator was the problem and some kind of compensation be given to Rosado’s family…although money can’t buy life.

    RIP Rosado. Hope Marlon can deal with the loss of his friend and not feel guilty.

  26. RedGyal Belize says:

    Totally agree with you BT!!!

  27. BZNinCALI says:

    BT, you are right. @ Kim, I saw the laughter & smile as Swift’s way of hiding his nervousness. I believe his description of what happened should be a warning to everyone who drinks & drives, it’s a tough lesson & in all fairness to him, he helped his friend immediately & if he, who was in front of the Toyota got out of the way because he saw what was about to happen, had the driver not been impaired they would not be burying their friend.

  28. The Educated One says:

    @ Sunshine….l totally agree with your comment!

  29. OpenMinded says:

    If you only knew how many people you’ve impacted…I’t sad you got cheated out of this life my friend. You had a bright future ahead of you. R.I.P. Ariel

  30. ken leslie says:

    I would like to offer my condolences to Alvaro and Family,they must be hurting real bad at this time.I didn’t know the lad but I grew up with his father.
    IF it isn’t compulsory to wear seatbelts in Belize,then it should be as they save lives.
    R.I.P Ariel and God bless the family.

  31. Grieving says:

    I knew Ariel briefly, and I think that was a great loss for Belize. Let us support his grieving family.
    However, how many accidents have occurred at that very same so called “roundabout” since its construction. some is definitely wrong there. Mr Castillo got tired of rebuilding his fence every month so he build a solid concrete structure but that does not solve the big picture.something is wrong with the engineering of that roundabout.!!! it needs to be addressed if not more people will die…

  32. D-Power says:

    Very sad turn of events.
    The parties involve should secure lawyers and investigate if the accelerator really got stuck. All late model Toyotas have a computer onboard that records events right up to the time of impact.
    I own a late model Toyota (Forerunner) and last week I received a letter from Toyota requesting a recall for faulty floor mats that can cause this type of accident.

  33. accelerateor says:

    If it was teh accelerator, then why is the police charging Castillo for Being under the influence of alcohol? and Why were they both on the roundabout. A local newspaper cites a witness as saying RACING. Racing would explain why they were both on teh roundabout. and what about the weed and alcohol and no seatbelt?
    tough responses

  34. Mel Caye Staine says:

    its a tragedy no doubt and yes there have been plenty problems with Toyota and all but at the end of the day Marlon was drinking and driving and thats the fact. I hope for his sake that he an forgive himself as it could have happened to anyone. He has to know that it was beyond his control. To Marlon Castillo and his family…. i am sorry for what you are going trough and to the Rosado family… i am more than deeply sorry for your loss. Ariel was my school mate at SJCJC and i know he was a sweetheart and though he is gone he will not be forgotten…..RIP ARIEL ROSADO…..

  35. Mel Caye Staine says:

    Winston Swift wasnt laughing because he is happy. he was nervous. I heard it when his voice broke and i know it was painful for him to have to retell the tale of his friends tragedy….. look beyond what you see people………………

  36. I Have Awaken says:

    cliched as it may sound, but when will people learn not to drink and drive. Sounds like they were racing.

  37. Belikin says:

    Really? Marlon is not at fault? He had alcohol in his system above the legal limit. no wondah Belize is so jacked up! Uneducated people opening their mouths! Politicians love that!

  38. NOLA says:

    if you want to check whether or not a TOYOTA is defective and has been recalled all you have to do is check you VIN here:

  39. NOLA says:

    ok so regardless of drinking or car defects, i disagree with the person that said the engineering of the roundabout was not done properly. Any and all roundabouts are designed for a maximum speed of only 35-40mph and i have seen many people drive through this roundabout at the same speed as on the northern highway 50-60mph. I don’t think Belizeans realize that Roundabouts should be approached at low speeds because they are designed that way. a roundabout will not make u lose control of your vehicle it is actually aimed to provide a slower and smoother flow of traffic – your speed and angle at which you approach the roundabout will cause the vehicle to lose control.


  40. Belizeangirl says:

    My condolences to the Rosado Family! It is very sad to know that something like this has to happen before everyone realizes how important it is NOT to drink and drive! Before all the speculations and the accusations, the police should do its investigation. Two young men at lost, Ariel his life and Marlon his tranquility. But before pointing fingers, both young men so irresponsible, if the true cause was drunk driving; Marlon for driving under the influence and Ariel for getting into the car with someone under the influence. All these questions, with no definite answers, but with definite loss. I pray for the Rosado Family because I cannot imagine your pain with the lost of your beloved son, and Marlon as well, for loosing his dear friend. This can happen to anyone, the laws need to be enforced and everyone needs to take responsibility. This is not the time to point fingers and looking for someone to blame. I hope that the law perfom their jobs PROPERLY and ACCURATELY and not be BIAS!!!! I will keep everyone involved in my prayers. The Rosado family may God bless you and give you the strength to cope with your loss.

  41. LJ says:

    Gone but definitely not forgotten fam. Keep watching over the Mango Tree Crew and the rest of the family. It’s like you are here with us a tomorrow you are gone. We will be praying for your family and Marlon as well. It’s just sad for us how sudden this happened.MANGO TREE CREW. RIP ARIEL. OHANA!!!!! AHOO!!!!!

  42. Liz says:

    Wearing a seat belt AND no drinking and driving would have saved this young man’s life. I never, ever get in a car with someone who has been drinking and I always wear my seat belt. It saves lives!

  43. Samantha says:

    My daughter is left without a father….this is the hardest thing ever! He will live through our daughter, Saniyya.

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