The head coach and an assistant for the Ayala High (Chino Hills, Calif.) were killed in a Memorial Day car accident, according to multiple reports.
Head coach Matt Hodges, 30, and assistant Gabby Constante, 21, were traveling home from a trip to a lake in Parker, Ariz., with Melissa Garnica, 20, and Jessica Gilardo, 21, officials said. All four were killed.
Hodges and Constate coached at Ayala and for the Legends Football Club. According to the San Bernardino Sun, Constante, Garnica and Giraldo were teammates and 2014 graduates of Vista Murrieta. Hodges finished up his fourth season and Ayala and Constante finished her second.
According to the California Highway Patrol, as reported by KABC, Hodges was driving a 2012 Toyota Corolla on Highway 177 and veered into oncoming traffic and collided head on with a big rig. The driver of the big rig was not injured.
A cause of the crash is still being investigated.
“Matt loved his players with all his heart,” Chino Hills coach Andy Plascencia told the San Bernardino Sun. “Matt and Gaby would both spend hours talking about their players. It was evident that both just wanted their players to be successful. I know both would want their players to know that they loved every moment they spent with them and that they must continue the love that Gaby and Matt showed. Their legacy will forever be one of love.”
Students held a private vigil Tuesday. Graduation at Ayala is Wednesday.