Paying Tribute: Rival school takes up collection for crash victims’ families during state playoff baseball game


Cross on the field at baseball game between Wilson and Madison Academy

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MADISON, Ala. - A tragic wreck in St. Florian has rocked the community. Three teenage boys were killed Thursday night along County Road 30 as the car they were riding in slid off the road, hitting a tree.

Authorities identified the victims as Braden Turner, 17, Coby Hines, 16, and Tyler Nelson, 16. School administrators say all three were students at Wilson High School.

Police said 16-year-old Kate Boggus, the driver of the vehicle, was airlifted to UAB Hospital. Kaylee McGee, 16, a passenger, was airlifted to Huntsville Hospital. System leaders say they were students at Florence High School. Both girls remain in the hospital.

Saint Florian police believe speed, fog, and wet roads all contributed to the crash.

On Friday night, Wilson's baseball team was in Madison for two state playoff games. Madison Academy leaders wanted to pay tribute to their opponents but said a moment of silence just wasn't enough. To remember Braden Turner, Coby Hines, and Tyler Nelson, the school hosted a prayer before the first pitch, then took up a collection to help their families.

Many students came to support their team, but they are still in shock.  "We didn't know what to believe, it was kind of a shock," said Drew Darby, an 8th grader at Wilson.

Just hours after hearing three of their friends and classmates were killed in a wreck the fans in maroon and blue showed up at the ballpark. "It doesn't matter what uniform you're wearing. Nobody's immune to it," said Madison Academy principal Brian Privett. "For us, we're just hurting with them."

A moment of silence. Heavy hearts in reflection, remembering Braden Turner, Coby Hines, and Tyler Nelson. "They're just good, sweet boys who'd do anything for you," recalled Wilson librarian Stephanie Smith.

Along with words of comfort, families from Madison chipped in for a donation to the boys' families.

"I feel like this is the ultimate show of sportsmanship for Madison County, and they have no idea how much this is appreciated," said Wilson football coach Scott Brown.

Wilson's baseball team won the first game tonight, 7 - 6.

At this time, funeral arrangements for the three boys haven't been made.