Former Buford High standout player dies from accident injuries - New York News

Former Buford High standout player dies from accident injuries

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BUFORD, Ga. -

A former Buford High School standout football player has died as a result of injuries suffered in a serious motorcycle crash.

Devin Durden, 21, passed away early Thursday morning. The former Buford High and Air Force Academy player was visiting home when he was involved in the accident last week.

Steven Fountain is the youth pastor at First Baptist Church of Buford, where Durden family attends. He has ministered to the family since the crash and was there when Devin spoke his only words from a hospital bed.

"He looked at his dad and he said, ‘Let's go home.' And having no idea what was to come, but for me, and I believe for them there's great power in those words now because we know Devin went home," said Fountain.

Devin's father is the head coach of the girl's basketball team at Buford High School. His assistant coach, Stuart Hall, says this tragedy has affected the entire campus.

"I feel like our entire campus and community is emotionally strained to some degree," said Hall.

Hall has watched the Durdens go through a rollercoaster ride of emotions, from finding out about Devin's accident to the hope he would recover, and then the news of his untimely death.

"Just having a phone conversation with him a few minutes ago, he said, ‘I'm angry, but I'm at peace,'" said Hall.

Hall says his girls' basketball team grieves for Coach Durden's loss, but he is moved by how they have come together during this trying time.

"Even our young players, hearing them pray for each other, watching them love each other, it was really, really, really encouraging," said Hall.

This is not the first tragedy at Buford High School this year. In September, Adam Smith, a basketball player at the school passed away, and Ryan Daniel, a coach at the school, died in January.

Hall says the deaths have impacted the entire campus, but the school administration and community will rally to support the students in their time of bereavement.

"It's about the kids. We want to care for them," said Hall. "I read today -- a parent tweeted this. She said what makes Buford so special at times like this is that God is in the center and we're just holding on."

Visitation for the Durden family and friends will be this Saturday and the funeral is set for Sunday.

If you would like to send condolences, visit: http://friendsofthedurdens.org/

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