by Will Lewis
VSU lost a member of its student body early Tuesday morning.
Marcus Holmes, 19, sophomore, was killed when he was struck by a UPS semi-truck on I-75.
Police say the accident occurred around 1 a.m. when Holmes stepped into traffic just north of the mile 19 marker on the normally bustling interstate.
“The driver of the UPS truck, whenever he noticed the pedestrian in the roadway he was unable to avoid impact with the pedestrian,” Sgt. Carl Taylor, Georgia State Patrol, said in an interview with WALB News.
At the moment officers with GSP say that drugs or alcohol don’t appear to be involved with the crash, but a blood test will provide definitive results. The tests are expected to be completed in a month.
President Dr. William McKinney sent an email to faculty and students announcing the death.
“On behalf of the entire VSU family, we extend our deepest sympathy to the Holmes family,” Dr. McKinney said.
On Tuesday, shortly after the crash, condolences from Holmes’s friends and family flooded his Facebook page, and word of his death continued to spread following McKinney’s announcement.
“Marcus was a bright, outgoing, and hopeful young man who shared those qualities with those around him, and without him, those closest to him find the world a slightly darker place,” Edward Braun, English instructor, said.
“Marcus was full with joy and kindness,” Hannah Davis, former Shorter University schoolmate to Holmes, said. “He had a huge heart and gave great advice.”
McKinney said consolers would be available to speak with students affected by Holmes’s passing. Students seeking assistance should call 229-333-5940.