Just a week before the start of the high school football season, the North Mecklenburg High community has been hit with tragedy.
A cheerleader for the school, Enjoneah Reel, was killed in a Thursday afternoon car wreck that also seriously injured a senior football player, Kalvin McCollum.
Fellow students said Enjoneah and Kalvin were dating and that she was on the track team in addition to being a cheerleader. In May, she competed in the conference championships and finished fifth in the long jump, third in shot put and was fourth in the 100 meter dash.
The Observer’s news partner, WBTV, reported that the crash was a head-on collision that happened about 5 p.m. near the intersection of Beatties Ford Road and McCoy Road. Officials have not released many details about the wreck .
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to The Charlotte Observer
North Mecklenburg officials told the Observer that Reel was killed on impact. McCollum was rushed to a local hospital and was in surgery Thursday night. McCollum, a 6-foot-3, 210-pound senior was a star for the Vikings last season, collecting 98 tackles and four sacks. He is considered a college prospect.
The team’s other players reportedly gathered at Carolinas Medical Center Thursday night to show support for McCollum, as he went through surgery. A Twitter post from a North Meck teammate said he pulled through and was in stable condition.
North Mecklenburg had a scrimmage game with Mount Pleasant Thursday night. The Vikings are scheduled to participate in a multi-team scrimmage Friday at Greensboro Dudley.
“Of course this is a tough loss to the North Mecklenburg family and community,” athletics director Marc Calderone said, “and our thoughts and prayers are with the Reel family.”
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools declined to comment about the accident.
Condolences began appearing on the school’s Twitter shortly after news of the crash spread late Thursday, including a posting from a neighbor of the school: “Prayers for their families and the NM nation.”
“God called another angel to his Kingdom,” Enjoneah’s family said on a Go Fund Me page they established for donations in her memory. “She was a beautiful and talented-gifted young lady. Enjoneah excelled in school and sports. She was loved by everyone, with her irreplaceable smile and personality.”
Staff writers Joe Marusak and Mark Price contributed