A Howard University law student was killed in a two-car collision early yesterday morning, just 12 hours before he was to be married. His finance, seated next to him in his Triumph sports car, received serious facial injuries.

Robert Glaubman was driving Jane Fitzpatrick home at about 1:30 a.m., friend said, when his car collided head-on with another on Falls Road in Montgomery County. The other driver, a 17-year-old girl, had lost control of the car, according to police.

Glaubman, 23, was pronounced dead at the scene. Fitzpatrick, 23, was taken to Shady Grove Adventist Hospital, where she was listed in stable condition yesterday.

Late yesterday, friends and relatives who had planned to be celebrating a beginning were mourning the sudden ending and remembering an evening that one friend described as "one of total happiness."

It began at Cedar Lane Unitarian Church in Bethesda, where the couple, in casual dress, and the bridal party rehearsed the ceremony scheduled for 2 p.m. Sunday. "Bob was in his element," said longtime friend Keith Levitt. "I've never seen the man so happy in my life. He was numb he was so happy."

Afterwards, the group moved to the home of the groom's parents in Rockville, where a catered dinner of barbecued chicken, spareribs and beer was served.

During the dinner they presented each member of the wedding party with a gift -- engraved pens for the men, bracelets for the women. "The were just literally on Cloud 9," Levitt said.

The last guests left around midnight. But Fitzpatrick and Glaubman decided to relax and discuss the day's events before he drove her back to her parents' home in Bethesda. He would then return home and sleep on a fold-out bed at his parents' house.

At about 1:15 a.m., the got into his 1979 Triumph and started off. On Falls Road, just south of Marseille Drive in Potomac, the car smashed head-on into a Ford that had gone out of control and crossed into their lane, police reported yesterday. The two cars came to a stop 80 feet from each other.

A police officer at the scene pronounced Glaubman dead at 1:39 a.m. from multiiple internal injuries.Fitzpatrick was taken to Shady Grove Adventist Hospital with serious facial injuries.

The other driver, 17-year-old Deborah Ann Williams of Rockville, was treated for minor injuries at Shady Grove. Yesterday, Montgomery County police said they were still considering whether to bring any charges against her.

Fitzpatrick, a graduate of Bethesda's Walt Whitman High School who got a social work degree from Salisbury State College in Maryland this year, was looking for a job to support herself and Glaubman while he attended law school. They had found a one-bedroom apartment in Aspen Hill and planned to move in after a honeymoon in Virginia Beach, a friend said.

An adventurous and athletic man, Glaubman played football and soccer and once built his own hang glider and tried, unsuccessfully, to fly it, according to a friend.

He attended John F. Kennedy High School in Silver Spring, then earned a bachelor's degree at the University of Maryland. He entered Howard University Law School last fall and talked of going into maritime law after graduation. He had found a construction job for the summer.

The couple met about five years ago, friends said, and had dated steadily since. Levitt said those who knew them well had assumed it would be just a matter a time before they got married. Everyone was confident, he said, that "nothing could go wrong."