Jose Alvarado and Calixto Hernandez were cousins who grew up together in El Salvador. Friday, their family grieved for Alvarado, killed in a Thanksgiving night crash in which Hernandez was arrested and charged with driving while intoxicated.
Alvarado, 35, and Hernandez, 36, both of Brentwood, were enjoying a day off from their jobs as dishwashers at separate restaurants Thursday night, said Hernandez's brother, Santos Hernandez.
Suffolk police said Hernandez was driving a 1994 Isuzu Amigo east on Second Avenue in Brentwood at about 9 p.m. when he collided with a westbound 2001 BMW 325i. The driver of the BMW was attempting to turn left onto American Boulevard, police said.
"Both drivers were drunk at the time," said Det. Sgt. Tony Lavista of the Third Detective Squad, which is investigating the crash.
Siblings of Alvarado and Hernandez gathered Friday in the basement apartment that Alvarado shared with four brothers.
Alvarado's wife and five children live in El Salvador, said his brother, Ismael Alvarado.
"I think because it was a holiday, maybe he was drinking," Santos Hernandez said.
Calixto Hernandez, of 125 Timberline Dr., and Selvin Lazo-Giron, 25, of 451 Smith St., Central Islip, were charged with driving while intoxicated, police said.
Lazo-Giron, the driver of the BMW, was charged with leaving the scene of an accident without reporting it, police said. He was arrested when he and his passenger showed up at a hospital seeking treatment, police said.
According to a criminal complaint filed in court, Lazo-Giron told police he had about seven beers. He pleaded not guilty Friday at his arraignment and was ordered held in lieu of $100,000 bail.
"He is a hardworking guy who supports his girlfriend and their 20-month-old [daughter]," said his attorney, Christopher McGuire of Central Islip.
Calixto Hernandez, who was treated for minor injuries, is expected to be arraigned Saturday.