Michelle Kim

Final Goodbyes for Long Island High School Football Star Who Died During Practice

Joshua Mileto, 16, was laid to rest during a funeral on Tuesday

A Long Island town is saying their final goodbyes to the high school football star who died last week in an accident during practice.

The funeral for Joshua Mileto, 16, was held at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church in Lake Ronkonkoma Tuesday. The teenager from Sachem East High School in Farmingville died after he was hit by a heavy log during practice used for drills.

As Mileto's hearse rolled by, young people lining the street outside the church held up their hands to signify Mileto's jersey number 5. Others released balloons bearing that same number. 

Teammates wearing football jerseys lined the steps as the teen's family followed the black coffin into the church. Their on-field rivals from Sachem North stood with them.

"Teammates and opponents together, and it was really very, very beautiful," said Bishop John Barres. 

"All these boys, all sports players at Sachem now have an angel watching over them," said Kathy Biazzi, a parent at Sachem North. 

Mileto had been participating in a strength and condition camp as part of an off-season practice with other players when the log fell and hit him in the head.

The teen, who also played baseball, was described as having a lively spirit, a kid who loved sports and the Giants, and his three brothers and parents. 

"He never let a day go by that he didn't kiss his mother, Sayyida, or tell his father, Angelo, he loved him," his obituary said. 

"Joshua was his own set of class and his love of live and his infectious spirit will forever live on in all of those we were honored to have known him." 

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