An East Texas track coach was one of two people killed in a crash involving an 18-wheeler and a bus that also left at least 18 high schoolers injured Thursday night.
Mount Pleasant High School's boys and girls track teams were returning home from a track meet in Paris at the time of the crash, according to Mt. Pleasant Independent School District Superintendent Judd Marshall.
The 18-wheeler, headed north on U.S. 271, swerved into the southbound lanes and struck the boys team's bus, according to Texas Department of Public Safety spokesman Lonny Haschel.
Marshall said the 18-wheeler also hit a car behind the bus, which was driven by one of the team's assistant coaches. The female driver died in the crash.
"I have never seen something like this before," Marshall said. "It's so sad and devastating."
The driver of the 18-wheeler — later identified as 50-year-old Bradley Ray Farmer, of Missouri — was also killed in the crash, authorities said.
Three coaches and 18 of the 32 students on the bus were injured in the crash. One coach and one student were transported to Tyler hospitals by helicopter in severe condition.