LEE COUNTY, Fla.- A birthday celebration turned deadly over the weekend and now families are grieving after a fiery crash killed three Southwest Florida teenagers. It happened late Saturday night on Treeline Avenue at Bavaria Road. The teenagers were celebrating the driver, Joseph Marcelak's 19th birthday.
"You know these guys greatly impacted everyone they came in contact with."
Coach Tyler Gold remembers the trio, three teenage boys with a strong friendship.
"We lost three key pieces and no matter who they are, it's going to impact you," said Gold.
Joseph Marcelak, Jordan Sadler and Jon Valentin are the boys involved in the fiery crash. Coach Gold tells WINK News, Joe was a star on the football field.
"Joe was a nut. He was full speed on everything he did, he was one of the hardest guys to coach, he didn't slow down, you couldn't stop him."
He remembers a boy who pushed others to believe the sky was the limit.
"During the hottest months of the year, he's running behind the other players saying don't show weakness, don't give up," Gold told WINK News.
As a way to help with the grieving, Coach Gold brought Joe's parents his football jersey.
"Your jersey, it's what you are, Sentinel's name across the front, your name on the back, I just thought it might help."
The coach got to know Jordan and Jon in history class. He said the two were "A" students.
"Those guys were so smart, so educated on all things going on politics, world news and you could sit there and have good conversations with them."
But, this scene on Saturday night, cut their lives short, after the car they were riding in hit, a pole, splitting the car in half and killing them on impact.
"It's devastating, you almost can't put it into words, almost surreal, any moment you're expecting those three guys to show up here."
WINK News has learned Joe graduated from Evangelical Christian school last year and Jordan and Jon received their diplomas last month. We are also learning tomorrow the school will hold a prayer service from 10 to 11:30 and counselors will be there to help with the grieving.