INDIAN ROCKS BEACH, Fla. — The football jersey of a 17-year-old girl who was killed by an impaired driver in June is being retired, the Seminole Warhawks said on twitter.
We will retire the Jersey of Sophie Delott before our home game on August 16th vs Gibbs. No Warhawk football player will ever again wear #22.— SeminoleWarhawksFB (@WarhawksFB) August 4, 2019
Sophia Delott was hit and killed by 69-year-old Neil Singhal on June 28, according to the sheriff's office. Delott was biking in the designated bike lane when she was struck.
“I would hope that he and everybody understands there’s absolutely no excuse, ever, to drink and drive,” Delott's football coach, Chris Miller said. “He took the life of a beautiful human being.”
Delott aspired to be a Marine, according to Miller. He says she never let anything get in her way.
“She was going to take on the world, she was going to play football, she was going to be a Marine,” Miller said. “None of the things that some people may perceive as a weakness, or a deterrent, was going to stop her.”
Witnesses told investigators Singhal veered into the bike lane and hit Delott, ejecting her from her bike. Delott was taken to a local hospital where she was later pronounced dead. Singhal was not injured, deputies say.
According to an arrest report, Singhal told authorities he should not have been driving. The report also says he smelled of alcohol, had slurred speech and was unsteady on his feet.
Delott's death was just two months before she was set to begin her senior year of high school.
“She was just going to take on the world, everybody knew it,” Miller said.
Investigators say Singhal was impaired at the time of the crash. He was arrested for DUI manslaughter and taken to the Pinellas County Jail.