Services set for West High School student killed in crash

Jacob Bates. (West ISD photo)
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ELM MOTT, Texas (KWTX) Services have been set for West High School senior Jacob Bates, 18, who died in a grinding crash last Thursday night on Interstate 35.

Visitation is from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday at the Aderhold Funeral Home Chapel at 808 South Reagan Street in West.

The funeral service is at 4 p.m. Wednesday in the West High School gymnasium.

Burial will follow at White Rock Cemetery.

Bates played both linebacker and running back on the West High School football team and “never left the field” during the team’s games, head football coach David Woodard said.

“To many of our players, Jacob was larger than life and a good example to the young ones,” he said.

“This is just another tragedy we have to deal with,” West High School football coach David Woodard said Friday.

West Mayor Tommy Muska, who lost his teenage son to an accident 12 years ago, expressed sympathy for the family Friday.

“It’s a real tragedy. He was very beloved and thought highly of in our school and in the community.’

Bates was driving a pickup truck south on the highway just before 8 p.m. Thursday when he encountered a backup in the Elm Mott area caused by an earlier hazmat spill on the highway, the Department of Public Safety said.

His truck slammed into the rear of an 18-wheeler.

Rescuers had to free him from the wreckage.

He was taken to a local hospital where he died.

No one else was hurt.

Speed may have been a factor in the crash, authorities said.

District staff members were available as students arrived at school Friday and counselors were on hand to talk with students, Truitt said.

The West Ministerial Alliance and Region 12 Crisis Team sent counselors as well.

All student activities for Friday were cancelled, including a baseball scrimmage, pep rally, softball scrimmage, cheer tryouts for middle and high school; and the boys’ basketball game against McGregor High School.

Superintendent David Truitt requested prayers for Jacob's family, friends, football teammates, classmates, peers, teachers, and the West community.

(Photo by Chelsea Edwards)
(Photo by Chelsea Edwards)
(Photo by Chelsea Edwards)
(Photo by Chelsea Edwards)