Candlelight vigil held for WCSU Men’s Lacrosse players killed in Colchester crash

New London

COLCHESTER, Conn. (WTNH) — Two members of Western Connecticut State University’s (WCSU) Men’s Lacrosse Team were killed and a third was seriously injured in a crash in Colchester Friday, according to the university.

State Police said two vehicles were traveling westbound on Route 354 in Colchester. The vehicle containing the student-athletes was speeding and trying to pass the other car. The driver, later identified as 18-year-old WCSU student Jacob Chapman, lost control, left the road, and hit the metal guardrail and multiple trees before the car came to rest down an embankment, according to police.

The driver, Chapman, and one of the passengers, 18-year-old Tyler Graham, were killed in the crash, police said. Another passenger, 19-year-old Trey Massaro, was brought to the hospital by Life Star for serious injuries.

Clark said the university Counseling Center met with players and coaches of the lacrosse team and is providing counseling to students in the residence hall where the three students lived on campus, as well as any other students in need.

Sunday night, hundreds of people attended a candlelight vigil for Graham and Chapman on the Colchester Green.

Marissa Mazzola, who organized the vigil, said, “Tyler and Jake were two peas in a pod. They were the best of friends.”

At the vigil, loved ones spoke sharing just how much Graham and Chapman will be missed.

Charles Mazzola, Marissa’s father, added, “They were both just funny, outspoken, just great kids to have around. They were an asset to the world and to Colchester.”

“The last couple of days have been a hurricane of emotions,” Marissa went on to say. “I don’t think a lot of us knew how to handle it. It’s been very hard to figure out what we’re feeling. In no way, shape, or form is it okay that two 18 years old passed away in a car accident.”

Graham and Chapman grew up in Colchester. They were first-year students at WCSU and had big plans for their futures.

At the event Sunday, their families thanked the community for the outpouring of support they’ve received.

Services for Graham and Chapman were announced Thursday.

The wake for Graham will be held Friday, Oct. 29. His funeral will be held Saturday. Both events will take place at Saint Andrew Church in Colchester. The wake for Chapman will be held Monday, Nov. 1, at the Aurora McCarthy Funeral Home in Colchester.

The university will be holding a memorial on campus in the near future.

The crash is still under investigation.

This is a developing story. Stay with the News 8 app and as more information becomes available.

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