Tragedy and sports have intertwined all too often at Oklahoma State
The tragic news of fatalities and scores of injuries caused when a car crashed into a crowd of revelers at Saturday’s Oklahoma State Homecoming parade quickly reminded of other sports-related tragedies that have too often affected the school.
Every year thousands of people attend the Homecoming parade in Stillwater, Okla., one of the weekend’s events that make Oklahoma State’s Homecoming one of the largest in the nation. Parade goers were horrified when a car plowed into spectators, causing four fatalities and injuring dozens.
Oklahoma State University is saddened by the tragic parade incident earlier this morning. Our thoughts & prayers are with those affected.Article continues below ...
— Oklahoma State Univ. (@okstate) October 24, 2015
Oklahoma State has seen its share of fatal incidents involving its sports teams. In late November 2011, women’s basketball coach Kurt Budke and assistant Miranda Serna were among four killed in a plane crash in Perry County, Ark., while they were on a recruiting trip.
That crash immediately sent the Oklahoma State family reeling with memories flooding back to a decade earlier on Jan. 27, 2001, when a plane crash killed 10 people, including two Oklahoma State men’s basketball players.
The plane was flying back from a game at Colorado in a snowstorm. In addition to the two pilots, the plane was carrying eight people involved with the Oklahoma State basketball team: two players, plus six members of the coaching staff and OSU broadcasters. There is a memorial erected outside Gallagher-Iba Arena called "Remember the Ten."
"It’s almost impossible to think it would happen once," OSU women’s radio analyst Casey Kendrick told ESPN after the 2011 crash. "And it’s happened twice."
This coming January will mark the 15th anniversary of the plane crash on that snowy night in Colorado. Every year, in a variety of ways, the university remembers the 10 who perished. Last year, before the Cowboys’ basketball game against Baylor, the Gallagher-Iba Arena video board displayed photos of the 10 — Kendall Durfey, Bjorn Fahlstrom, Nate Fleming, Will Hancock, Daniel Lawson, Brian Luinstra, Denver Mills, Pat Noyes, Bill Teegins and Jared Weiberg.
April will mark the 10th anniversary of the "Remember the 10 Run," which provides support to OSU Counseling Services.
Saturday’s tragic scene will again test Oklahoma State’s resolve.
The school’s undefeated and 14th-ranked football team took the field against Kansas only about four hours after the chaotic scene unfolded. A moment of silence was held at the stadium, and Governor Mary Fallin ordered flags to be flown at half-staff, FOX Sports broadcaster Tim Brando announced ahead of the game. Cowboys players knelt and prayed prior to kickoff, a scene that can be viewed in the video above.
— Matt Tait (@mctait) October 24, 2015
Oklahoma State defeated Kansas 58-10.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.