By Beth Germano

BOSTON (CBS) — There was a moment of silence before the Holy Cross men’s basketball game Thursday. It brought athletic teams together as they continue to comfort one another over the loss of fellow athlete Grace Rett, who died in a Florida van crash Wednesday on her way to winter practice with the women’s rowing team.

“A moment of silence brings all of our minds and hearts into the right place,” said Holy Cross Dean of Students Michele Murray.

They are also thinking of at least five other students who remain hospitalized and now are all expected to survive. Doctors said one student is still unconscious and on a respirator.

The trauma has had a ripple effect across the campus and beyond. Murray said they are overwhelmed by the outpouring of support.

On the second floor of the school’s athletic complex, flowers have been placed on a single rowing machine where last month Grace Rett broke a world record for indoor rowing. Sophomore rower on the men’s team Rudy Antoncic said Grace was the heart of her team.

“She couldn’t be stopped.  All the time she was in the gym and weight room–incredibly driven,” Antoncic said. “She wanted to be a coach or trainer of some sort.”

Grace Rett. (Image Credit: Holy Cross)

As the campus grieves, there’s a long road ahead. Doctors said some students are still undergoing surgeries and some have head injuries.

“Some of them we don’t know what their capabilities will be in the long run, but most seem to be having a good prognosis,” said Dr. Jason Moore, trauma surgeon at Lawnwood Regional Medical Center in Fort Pierce, Florida.

Antoncic said he’s already raised more than $100,000 of support from the tight-knit rowing community across the country to help the team survive their injuries anyway he can.

“This is going to extend for a long time for a lot of these girls,” he said. “We want to be there every step of the way.”

Beth Germano

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