KERRVILLE, Texas – The Tivy High School community is mourning the loss of a student who died in a car crash on Thursday evening.
David Jones, head coach of the Tivy football team, confirmed Friday that senior David Palestrant was killed in the crash reported Thursday night on I-10 in the Kerrville area.
Another student was also injured in the crash, Jones said.
“It’s been a tough day for a group of people here, a family of Antlers and Tivy,” said Jones.
Though Palestrant was not going to play Friday against Alamo Heights due to a foot injury, he was set to walk onto the field with his parents for the football team’s Senior Night.
Tivy High School canceled its scheduled pep rally Friday, according to the Kerrville ISD Facebook page. Members of the community instead organized a “prayer walk” at the Tivy football stadium Friday afternoon in Palestrant’s honor.
The game against Alamo Heights still went on as planned after Jones said he consulted with the school and the team, who ultimately decided together to proceed.
“David loved athletics. He loved the Antlers. His family were die-hard Antlers fans. I talked to the group, I talked to the superintendent... I met with the 28 seniors and got their input and got their ideas about what we needed to do... and they thought we needed to play,” Jones said. “Life throws you some tough times and I think you have to get up off the deck and fight back.”
“It’s been an extremely hard year, and it’s been extremely tough on these young kids, but they have handled it beautifully,” Jones added.
Secretary and social media manager for the Tivy Athletic Booster Club Beth Bates said this tragedy has made an impact on the entire school and the town as a whole.
“In a town this small, where we have one middle school, one high school and all of our kids run through the same sports programs... you know who they are. So it hits really hard when one of our students has something like this happen,” said Bates.
Many people, including some parents from rival schools, are showing their support to Palestrant’s family by collecting donations, and a meal train is in the works as well, according to Bates.
“I think as a parent, you see it as it could be your kid. It could just as easily be you standing there. So that kind of binds all of us together as we walk through things like this,” Bates said. “We see it, especially other football parents. They see that this kid that just played against them a week or a month ago, it could be their child. So I think it takes away rivalry and it brings it close to home.”
Further details about the crash were scarce. Texas Department of Public Safety troopers did not provide additional information on the incident as of Friday evening.
We’ll bring more updates to this story as they become available.