FALMOUTH (CBS) — Two members of the Falmouth High School hockey team have died after their car struck a tree Thursday night.
The crash happened on Thomas Landers Road.
The driver, 17-year-old James Lavin of East Falmouth, was killed instantly.
His teammate and passenger, 17-year-old Owen Higgins, also of East Falmouth, was taken to Rhode Island Hospital with life-threatening injuries. Higgins died at the hospital Friday afternoon, Falmouth Police announced Friday evening in a statement.
Lavin and Higgins, both seniors, were close friends and hockey teammates. Higgins was just named team captain in the last few days.
The area where the crash happened, a mile and a half from their practice rink, was marked by a memorial featuring a jersey and flowers Friday morning.
Thursday was the last day of classes at Falmouth High before the holiday break, but the school was open Friday, and grief counselors were on hand as students gathered to mourn their classmate.
A large crowd of students gathered at the football field on Friday afternoon. Students could be seen sobbing and hugging each other, with some wearing their Falmouth High School jerseys
“This community has come together,” said Falmouth Superintendent of Schools Nancy Taylor. “Our hearts go out to the families of both of these young men. This community will remain together to help get our kids and our families through this.”
Lavin and Higgins were both well-known athletes at the school, having also played on the football team that won the Super Bowl at Gillette Stadium this fall.
The pair had just left hockey practice Thursday on their way home before the single-car crash happened.
Hockey coach Paul Moore said practice ended at 6:10 p.m. and he received a phone call about the crash 30 minutes later.
Moore said Lavin and Higgins were “best friends” who were “connected at the hip.” Their lockers were next to each other.
“This is a very tight-knit community, a very supportive community, and when we experience something like this, everyone’s impacted,” said Taylor.
It’s not yet clear what caused the car to go off the winding road, which is not very well lit. There were reports of black ice in the area.
WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Kim Tunnicliffe reports