A NASCAR crew member, 30, and his new bride, 23, died in car crash on their dream honeymoon in the Florida Keys just days after their wedding.
William “Rowdy” Harrell and his wife Blakley were both pronounced dead at the scene in the Tuesday crash.
Newlyweds William ‘Rowdy’ Harrell and his wife Blakley both died in a car crash on Tuesday, just four days after their wedding[/caption]
The couple were wed on Saturday, and both were pronounced dead after the Tuesday crash[/caption]
Hendrick Motorsports confirmed the couple’s death in a statement on Wednesday afternoon.
“Our entire team is absolutely devastated at the loss of Rowdy and Blakley,” Greg Ives, Harrell’s crew chief for the last six seasons said in a statement.
“They were such positive, giving and passionate people who could not have been a more perfect match.”
Ives said Harrell “had an energetic infectious personality” and described him as “the heart and soul of our team.”
“Our prayers are with Rowdy, Blakley and their wonderful family,” Ives added.
Harrell most recently worked on the No. 88 Cup Series Team of driver Alex Bowman[/caption]
The vehicle went over the center line of the road into oncoming traffic.
A driver of a 2013 F-250 tried to veer onto the shoulder – but the vehicles crashed headfirst, the Florida Highway Patrol report said.
The 62-year-old Tennessee pickup driver was taken to a hospital with minor injuries, while the other passengers – two women, ages 62 and 58 – were flown to mainland hospitals with critical injuries, the Miami Herald reported.
The newlyweds, however, died at the scene of the crash.
William and Blakely had been married just four days earlier, on Saturday.
Authorities are investigating if alcohol was a factor in the crash, the Miami Herald reports.
They were in the Florida Keys celebrating their honeymoon, according to Hendricks Motorsports.
Harrell and Blakely had been in Florida celebrating their wedding[/caption]
Harrell also was a stand-in linebacker for the University of Alabama’s football team[/caption]
Nascar shared a statement offering their condolences to the newlyweds and their family and friends.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the Harrell and @TeamHendrick family,” Nascar said in a tweet.
Harrell had worked as a stand-out tire carrier for Hendrick Motorsports, according to the racing team.
He most recently worked for the No. 88 NASCAR Cup Series team of Nascar driver Alex Bowman, Hendricks said.
Before his time with Nascar, Harrell was on the University of Alabama football team.
He won three national championships as a walk-on middle linebacker, according to Hendrick Motorsports.
The University of Alabama Football shared a statement following Harrell’s death.
“Rowdy Harrell was a wonderful teammate and friend. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends during this devastating time,” the football team wrote.
“Roll Tide, Rowdy.”