Moped accident kills student

By Kimberly Miller

Arizona Daily Wildcat

A 26-year-old UA student died Jan. 4 from head injuries sustained from a moped accident on New Year's Day.

Joseph Michael Devan, a University of Arizona English junior, was on his way home from work when he swerved to miss a large dog in the road. The dog became frozen in the headlights of Devan's moped and he hit him.

The dog was found dead at the scene and Devan was taken to the hospital in a coma. The hospital was unable to identify him because he left his wallet at home, and originally listed him as John Doe.

His roommate of seven months, Joseph Ostoorga, who runs Caring Heart Ministries, said he became worried about Devan when his boss called the next day and said he never showed up for work. Ostoorga began calling hospitals to see if any had a John Doe listed. When Tucson Medical Center called back and described a man brought in from a motor accident Ostoorga said he knew it was Devan.

"I still go by his room and expect him to be there," Ostoorga said.

Devan stayed in a coma for four days. His family decided to take him off life support when doctors said he was brain-dead.

Born in Pueblo, Colo., Devan came to Tucson three years ago from Texas to study English at the UA. Ostoorga said Devan wanted to be a college English professor and was planning to graduate in December.

Ostoorga said Devan was planning a trip to Australia this summer and was studying Latin for a long-term trip to Rome.

"He really wanted to travel and improve himself," Ostoorga said. "He's travelled all over the United States and wanted to go to Europe to expand his horizons."

Devan had recently taken up an interest in music and was enrolled in music appreciation courses at the UA. Ostoorga said he liked classical music, especially Beethoven.

"We used to listen to classical music together during dinner," Ostoorga said. "But we liked everything."

Devan is survived by his parents, Joseph and Gloria Cordova of Pueblo, Colo., and two sisters, also of Pueblo.

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