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Teachers remember Metro senior killed before graduation

Posted at 5:00 PM, May 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-07 22:15:20-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — An 18-year-old student killed in a wreck before his graduation is being remembered as thoughtful, loving and cheerful.

McGavock High School senior Kevin Duke died on Couchville Pike when the vehicle he was driving went off the road and hit a tree.

“I came outside to look and and it was awful,” witness Martha Seay told NewsChannel 5. “I’m very sorry that happened and I’m praying for the family.”

His two 17-year-old passengers, Gerome White and Aiden Sullivan, remain at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. White is in stable condition but Sullivan is in critical condition after an injury to his brain, according to McGavock High School principal Robbin Wall.

Officials with the Metro Nashville Police Department said there were no alcohol or drugs found at the scene but speed was a factor.

The news hit hard for Duke’s teachers who viewed him as a phenomenal student. The 18-year-old was known to produce his own music from home and his love of cars, which he raised enough money to buy his own late last month.

English teacher Tristan Puckett said Duke was in the aviation and transportation academy at the school. Puckett even nominated him to play an English challenge at the school and won last year.

“I didn’t have to worry about Kevin. He always did his work and as I got to know him, I saw how creative and unique he was,” Puckett said. “I’m going to miss not being able to know where Kevin is headed next and what he was going to do.”

The future seemed bright for the senior who also participated in the robotics program at the school. Chemistry teacher Abbie Alosi saw how how driven and dedicated he was on top of his positive attitude.

“He was always just a very cheerful kid to have in class and I loved talking to him. He’s the one who brought you up every single day and brightened your day and just inspired me to be a better teacher,” Alosi said.

Duke was supposed to graduate on May 16. The principal said there will likely be some type of moment of silence although details have yet to be finalized.