Parents of Weston teen declared brain dead to donate son’s organs

DAVIE, FLA. (WSVN) - A tragic accident took the life of a young South Florida man, but his parents are keeping his memory alive in more than one way.

The death of 18-year-old Max Cardenas has hit his Broward County community hard. The athletic teen played soccer, attended Cypress Bay High School in Weston and had big plans for the future.

But on Wednesday afternoon, Cardenas suffered a brain injury while penny boarding. He underwent surgery but was declared brain dead.

On Saturday night, family, friends and other community members gathered with heavy hearts at Vista View Park in Davie. They lit candles to honor and remember Cardenas and the life he lived.

“The club changed the time of their games, just so that everybody could participate,” said Sandra Soriano, a friend of the teen.

One way Cardenas will be remembered is by his parents’ gesture. They consented to donate nine different sets of organs to patients who need them.

Those who knew Cardenas said he was one to always want to help and support others. “He was always smiling, regardless of what was going on in his life,” said Sandra. “You never would know that he was having a bad day. He was always smiling.”

“It was Max. He’s the one who brought all these people together,” said friend Alex Soriano. “I know that he’s looking over us smiling right now.”

Loved ones said they did not expect such a large turnout on Saturday. There were so many people that they had to get the mayor involved, and that, they said, just goes to show how many lives he touched.

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