Those who knew him remembered 14-year-old Dominic Trionfo of Middle Island Monday as the kind of youngster who could make anyone laugh, but was levelheaded, a good student and a respected umpire in the local sports league.
"He was a great person and he did not deserve this," Amber O'Neill, 16, of Ridge, said. "I met him probably three years ago and had study hall with him. . . . He made study hall so funny. He was the class clown, and he was the sanest person ever."
Grief counselors and staff at Longwood High School Monday helped students and faculty cope with the death of Trionfo. He was killed Sunday on Peconic Bay as he operated his grandfather's Jet Ski for the first time since getting his license, his family said.
Trionfo, a freshman, was a junior varsity football player, had a 90 average, played the saxophone in the band and had been a baseball umpire with the Longwood Youth Sports Association.
"This is a terrible tragedy for the Trionfo family and the entire Longwood community," school Superintendent Allan Gerstenlauer said Monday. "Dominic was a very well-liked, popular student. Our hearts are broken for Dominic's parents and his family and friends."
John Hickman, 48, a Longwood resident and umpire instructor at the sports association, called Trionfo "a really great umpire."
"Nobody gave him a hard time because he was good -- good on the mechanics and on the rules . . . He was a good kid and will be sorely missed," he said.
Grandfather John Martinelli said a wake for Trionfo is Wednesday at O.B. Davis Funeral Home, Route 25A, Miller Place. A funeral Mass is planned for Thursday at 10 a.m. at St. Louis de Montfort Roman Catholic Church, 75 New York Ave., Sound Beach.
Trionfo was killed about 2 p.m. when the Jet Ski apparently hit an anchor line on his grandfather's boat. He recently had received his state boating license and was driving the craft solo for the first time, Martinelli, 62, said.
Trionfo was treated by the Mattituck Fire Department rescue team, police said. He was pronounced dead at Peconic Bay Medical Center.
Southold police Chief Martin Flatley said Monday it could take "a week or two" for the investigation into the accident to be completed.
With Gary Dymski, Gregg Sarra, Paul LaRocco and Nicholas Spangler