PIEDMONT, Okla. - Luke Ross, 19, and Sean Tucker, 19, were best friends from high school, both home from college for the Christmas break.
The two graduated in May from Southwest Covenant, a small, private Christian school in Yukon.
Friday night, they went back to their alma mater.
Their old coach has an open door policy for alumni, and the two former basketball players gave a pep talk to the current team before their Friday night game.
“We had just lost a game, but they were nothing but encouraging and typical Sean and Luke, funny but encouraging,” said Southwest Covenant principal and coach Kevin Cobbs.
Ross and Tucker stayed after the game chatting with their coach and other people at the school, then they headed out to visit another friend near Piedmont.
They were at the stop sign at N.W. 150th and Mustang Road when a speeding driver slammed into the back of their car.
“It was like an explosion. We thought it might’ve been a transformer,” said Lisa Yokley, who lives nearby and heard the crash. “We saw a big, like on our window in the front right there, it was a ball of fire.”
“It was a very violent collision. Again, very high speed collision that led to both vehicles bursting into flames,” said Master Sergeant Gary Knight with the Oklahoma City Police Department.
The speeding driver and a passenger in his car both made it out alive.
The female passenger was unharmed, but the driver was rushed to the hospital where he remains in intensive care.
Police believe he was possibly impaired, and they took a sample of his blood to send off for testing.
Leaders at Southwest Covenant are still in shock.
“Very hard to, very hard to comprehend,” Cobbs said. “They are great kids. They are model students, model young men. So, we were fortunate to have them.”
The headmaster at Southwest Covenant called an assembly for the students Monday morning to talk to them about the tremendous loss.
“It’s obviously heartbreaking. The only hope that we have or you can hang onto in this is their Christian faith and the faith that these young men had in God and in Christ,” Headmaster Steve Lessman said.
Tucker was attending school at the University of Oklahoma where he had just pledged a fraternity.
Ross was attending John Brown University in Arkansas, studying construction management.
Police tell us they will wait on the results of the blood test to determine if the driver that caused the accident will be charged.