Former NFL player DJ Hayden & 5 others killed in car collision in Houston
Former NFL cornerback DJ Hayden and two of his ex-teammates from the University of Houston have died in a devastating accident early Saturday morning in downtown Houston intersection.
According to the Associated Press and the Houston Chronicle, the traffic signal accident that claimed 6 lives occured around 2 am when a Chrysler 300, reportedly traveling at “high velocity,” ran a red light and collided with an Acura SUV.
The SUV, carrying Hayden along with former University of Houston players Zachary McMillian and Ralph Oragwu, was struck in the collision, leading to their fatalities. The driver of the Chrysler, whose identity has not been disclosed, also died in the crash. Additionally, a pedestrian, believed to be homeless, was killed in the tragic event.
Houston Police Assistant Chief Megan Howard, as reported by the AP, confirmed the details of the crash but mentioned that the investigation is ongoing, and several aspects, including the identification of the SUV’s driver, are yet to be ascertained.
Jeffery Lewis, another former University of Houston player who was a passenger in the SUV, survived the crash and has been interviewed by the police. A female passenger from one of the vehicles is currently in critical condition.
DJ Hayden, aged 33 and a native of Houston, had a remarkable career trajectory. As a senior at the University of Houston in 2012, he miraculously recovered from a near-fatal heart injury sustained during practice, thanks to the prompt action of trainers and medical staff. His recovery led to his selection as a first-round NFL draft pick in 2013, and he played eight seasons with teams including the Oakland Raiders, Detroit Lions, and Jacksonville Jaguars.
The football community is mourning the loss of these athletes. Former UH football coach Tony Levine expressed his heartbreak on social media, reminiscing about the remarkable qualities of McMillian, Hayden, and Oragwu. The Oakland Raiders also released a statement, remembering Hayden’s courage, perseverance, and dedication, and extending their condolences to the bereaved families.
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