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KAY COUNTY, Okla. (KFOR) – Three University of Oklahoma students died Friday night when their vehicle was struck by a semi-truck in Kay County amid severe weather conditions.

Nicholas K. Nair, 20, of Denton, Texas, Gavin A. Short, 19, of Grayslake, Ill., and Drake H. Brooks, 22, of Evansville, Ind., all died at the scene of the crash on Intestate 35 South near mile marker 214 in Tonkawa, Okla., according to Oklahoma Highway Patrol officials.

Photo goes with story
The three OU meteorology students who died in a tragic crash Friday night. Photo provided by Brayden Siau, also an OU meteorology student.

Each young man is listed as a student on OU’s website. KFOR has learned that all three were meteorology students.

An OU official released the following statement regarding the students’ death:

“The university is devastated to learn of the tragic passing of three students. Each were valued and loved members of our community. At this time, we ask the public to respect the privacy of their families.”


The three students were traveling in a 2017 Volkswagen Tiguan, heading south on I-35 in rainy weather, when at approximately 11:23 p.m. the vehicle hydroplaned, lost control and went off the right side of the road. The vehicle reentered the road to the left and became disabled, blocking the outside lane, OHP officials said.

A 2020 Freightliner tractor-trailer heading south on I-35 crashed into the Volkswagen, according to officials.

All three young men were pinned for approximately 5 hours and 26 minutes inside the Volkswagen. Tonkawa Fire and EMS officials freed their bodies from the wreckage.

The crash remains under investigation.