Tyler Zook, Lancaster, Pennsylvania teen kills self after car crash leads to his best friend and fellow football teammate, Tyreese Smith being killed.
Three friends — Tyler Zook, 17; Tyreese Smith, 16; and Amalie Wendt, 18 — were riding in a Hyundai Santa Fe when it veered off the road and crashed into a field in East Lampeter Township just after midnight Saturday morning, according to the Lancaster Daily Voice.
Smith suffered traumatic injuries and died of asphyxiation after the car rolled several times and landed on its side. The teen’s death was ruled accidental. Wendt who survived the wreck was hospitalized.
Zook took his own life a mile away from the scene and was found dead by police about an hour and a half after the fatal crash.
The car wreck was determined to be caused by excessive speed. Police did not release the nature of Zook’s self-inflicted death or announce who was driving the car. Of note, the car the teens were in belonged to Wendt’s father.
This past Friday 2 of my best friends lost there lives in a car crash. I wanted to share this because they were amazing people and even better friends. Anything helps. Thank You
Tyler Zook – https://t.co/dZZkvRHkkQ
Ty Smith – https://t.co/d5yG4ELtwF pic.twitter.com/BNMhjBG9d6
— Aiden Johnson (@AidenJohnson87) June 28, 2022
Was there alcohol involved?
Zook was an offensive lineman and defensive lineman in the team’s Class of 2023, according to the Lancaster Daily Voice.
The pair were also football players at Conestoga Valley Senior High School.
‘Tyler enjoyed spending time with his teammates both on and off the field. He also enjoyed hunting, fishing, spending time with family, and being at the beach,’ his obituary read. ‘Tyler was preceded in death by his best friend, Tyreese Smith, of Lancaster.’
Zook and Smith had played football together for ten years and were getting ready for the fall season at Conestoga Valley Senior High School in Lancaster, where Zook had just finished his junior year and Smith was an outgoing sophomore.
The friends also both worked as cooks at a Sonic Drive-In and had been on the clock at the burger joint Friday night before the crash, a mourning classmate said.
Classmates flocked to a makeshift memorial near their high school.
‘They’re hysterical,’ Patience Conner said of the pair as she held a vigil Monday afternoon, according to the Lancaster Online.
‘They could make anyone laugh,’ she said, adding the friends ‘couldn’t do one thing without the other.’
Conner said she had hung out with Zook and Smith since they were in middle school, often watching them play video games or basketball.
Wendt, the third teen involved in the crash, had been released from the hospital after reportedly being treated for serious injuries.
Not immediately clear is whether toxicology tests had been conducted on Zook and whether he had been drinking on the night of the tragic crash.