CHESNEE, S.C. (WNCN) — Dozens of people in the Chesnee community attended vigils over the weekend after three people were killed in a crash near Chesnee High School — with the school’s football game later canceled in what officials called a “terrible tragedy.”
The crash injured one person and killed three others Friday afternoon, about a block from Chesnee High School along Fairfield Road near Henderson Road. The driver of a Lexus sedan went off the left side of the road, hit a ditch and then hit some trees.
The names of those who died in the crash have not been released, but many in the small tight-knit community are concerned they could be high school students.
Just hours after the wreck, Chesnee High School Principal Erik Gerstenacker announced the football game that night against Landrum High School would be rescheduled.
Sunday, Spartanburg County School District Two announced the game would be played Monday at 7:30 p.m. at Chesnee High School.
Many people were touched by the reaction of those in Chesnee. Friday afternoon, dozens of high school students gathered to pray in a large circle to honor and remember those killed in the crash.
A photo by Brittney Pflanz of the group praying was widely circulated on social media.
“Sometimes there are no words,” Pflanz wrote on Facebook.
U.S. flags at CADA Park and Chesnee City Hall were at half-staff Sunday. Many people are trying to show support for others around Chesnee by posting images of “Pray for Chesnee” on social media.
Others are encouraging prayer.
“Small town, Big God. Pray for the families and the students as they go to class tomorrow,” Carole Mahaffey Walker wrote on Facebook.
Meanwhile, dozens of people attended a vigil Saturday evening outside Chesnee High School. Many spoke about their feelings and the victims while candles were arranged in CHS letters on the sidewalk with a large heart-shaped group of candles above.
“No matter who your high school team is or where you’re from, we are all Eagles right now. Pray for the town of Chesnee. Pray for the first responders. Pray for Chesnee High School. Pray for the families that are in their darkest moments. Pray for these young friends,” one mother wrote on Facebook Saturday morning.
Some fundraisers are planned or underway, with one group promising 100 percent of profits will go the help families as they sell t-shirts that say “Small Town. Big God.” along with #ChesneeStrong and cross.
A hot dog fundraiser and yard sale is also planned for Oct. 12 at noon at Victory Baptist Church in Inman.
On Sunday just after noon, Chesnee High School posted a photo that hundreds of people liked and shared on Facebook.
The image is of the school’s sign with letters that simply say “Chesnee Strong.”
WSPA-TV contributed to this report