October 3, 2009

Clark Dies From Injuries Sustained in Single-car Collision

BANNER ELK, N.C. - Lees-McRae College track and field student-athlete Alonzo Clark died Tuesday, after suffering severe head injuries in a single-car collision last Monday in Banner Elk.

The sophomore was from Fredricksburg, Va., and was a member of the track and field team and Beta Omega Kappa.

"Alonzo represented everything we want in a student-athlete - dedication to his teammates, classmates and friends, as well as the loyalty of a son and brother," Athletic Director Craig McPhail said.

"Alonzo was the type of student-athlete you always dream of coaching," Head Track and Field Coach Ley Fletcher said. "He worked hard on the track and in the classroom and had great success in both areas. In his short life, he lived life at a very high quality. I will miss Alonzo, along with everyone else on the team. He will always be a big part of Lees-McRae Track and Field and Lees-McRae College in our hearts."

"In the short time we were able to spend together, Zo impacted so many people on our campus and in our community," McPhail said. "He truly lived life to its fullest and for this I am thankful to have had him on our team."

Clark was a sprinter on the Bobcat track team, helping guide them to the first Conference Carolinas Track and Field Championships last spring. His events in track were the 4x100m relay team, 4x400m relay team and ran the open 200m.

"In this time of sadness, Alonzo's legacy will continue - his organs were donated to nine different people helping them continue a healthy life," McPhail said.

"My entire family would like to thank the college family for the lasting support and allowing Alonzo the great opportunities which Lees-McRae afforded him," Alonzo Clark, Sr. said.

Lees-McRae held a short memorial service in Clark's honor Tuesday afternoon where 300 plus friends, teammates, faculty, staff and peers reflected on his life.

Before the home soccer matches Wednesday, Lees-McRae will ask that everyone in attendance observe a moment of silence for the Clark family.

Clark is survived by his mother, Cheryl Clark, father, Alonzo Clark, Sr. and siblings Felicia, Ben and Michelle.