Hundreds Turn Out To Emotional Vigil Honoring Pittsylvania Co. Teens Killed In Crash
By Tola Adamson
Gretna, VA-- It was a very emotional night for many students at Gretna High School on Thursday night. They celebrated the lives of 18-year-old William Ward and 17-year-old Donovan Stone at a candlelight vigil. Both young men were killed in a crash on Level Run Road in Pittsylvania County on Sunday.Hundreds packed out the stands at the Gretna High School football field as they paid their respects. It was very obvious that Ward and Stone were well-known and well-loved.While there were many tears, a speech from students' teacher made the crowd break into laughter."These two were full of life and fun. When one laughed, both laughed, and it was a contagious laugh, so then the whole class was joining in. They were inseparable. If Donovan came to visit, it wouldn't be long until Will stopped by, like clockwork every day," said Rhonda Martin, BETA Sponsor at Gretna High School. The Pittsylvania County School Board also expressed their condolences. After lighting candles, a balloon release and presentation of memorial banners rounded off the ceremony.Students that were close to the young men rallied together to hold the vigil. They said they are still in shock, but believe the vigil will be there first step in the healing process."It doesn't feel real yet because we just feel like maybe they're at home and they'll come back later. It hasn't really hit us yet. The first day was really really hard because usually we come to school and they're posted up on the lockers, and Donovan was so ready for junior year because we're about to graduate. So it's difficult. It's really difficult," said Jakia Barbour, a Gretna High School student.There will be a joint funeral for the young men at Fairview Baptist Church in Gretna on August 16 at 1 p.m. So far, no one has been charged in the crash.
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