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A University of Georgia football player and team staff member were killed in a car crash after the team's national championship victory celebration in Athens, Georgia on Sunday, Jan. 15.

Devin Willock, 20, an offensive lineman on the Bulldogs football team at the University of Georgia, and staffer Chandler LeCroy, 24, and two other members of the football program were returning back after the Bulldogs celebrated their second consecutive national championship win with a parade and ceremony. The 2021 Ford Expedition that LeCroy was driving hit two power poles and trees after it left the road at around 2:45 a.m. on Sunday, Jan. 15 outside UGA's campus in Athens. Willock died at the scene and LeCroy died at the hospital, People reported.

Two other members of the football program, a 21-year-old male passenger and a 26-year-old female passenger were injured and are in stable condition.

"Devin and Chandler were two special people who meant so much to the University of Georgia, our football program, and our athletic department," a statement from UGA reads. "We ask that everyone keep their families in your prayers during this very difficult time."

"We are all heartbroken and devastated with the loss of Devin Willock and Chandler LeCroy. Devin was an outstanding young man in every way and was always smiling. He was a great teammate and a joy to coach," head coach Kirby Smart said in a release. "Chandler was a valuable member of our football staff and brought an incredible attitude and energy every single day. We grieve with their families for this tragic loss and will support them in every way possible."

The crash happened just hours after fans packed Sanford Stadium to celebrate the team's national championship. Following this, former players like Jordan Davis of the Philadelphia Eagles, and current players, like linebacker Nolan Smith, shared tributes to both Willock and LeCroy, CBS News reported.

"Watching them grow and become like family over these few years. There is no grief without love, and we love both of you like family," Davis wrote.

The crash marked the first fatal motor vehicle crash of 2023 in Athens-Clarke County and is under investigation.

"On behalf of the University of Georgia, our entire campus grieves for the loss of two young members of our campus community: student-athlete Devin Willock and football staff member Chandler LeCroy," wrote President of the University of Georgia, Jere W. Morehead. "Our thoughts and prayers are with their families and friends. We also pray for the full recovery of those injured in this tragic accident."

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