RED LION, Pa. - Students and staff at Red Lion Area Senior High School are mourning the deaths of two students who were killed Tuesday night in a fiery car accident.
Stone Hill, 17, and Nicholas Mankin, 16, would have been seniors at the high school this fall, but they were killed when the car they were riding in hit a utility pole and burst into flames on Slab Road in Lower Chanceford Twp., York County.
"They were kids that you would be happy, you'd be proud if they were your son," Red Lion High School football coach Jesse Shay said. "They were great teammates."
Shay held a team meeting Wednesday morning at the high school attended by almost 50 of Hill's and Mankin's teammates. He wanted to let his team know that it was okay to grieve the loss of their teammates and friends.
"Nick was kind of goofy a little bit, you know, a mild-mannered kid," Shay said.
"[But] he had a little bit of a mean streak to him once he put that helmet on."
While Mankin was a starting offensive lineman for the Lions, Hill was a three-sport athlete at the school and was an up-and-coming linebacker who had just returned from a recruiting camp at Duke University in North Carolina.
"Stone was the strong, silent type," Shay said. "He led by example. A lot of kids worked as hard as Stone, but nobody would work hard than him."
"It's a huge shock. I never would have expected something like this," Cody Stern, a 2015 Red Lion High School graduate and a friend of the victims, said. "Stone was just a big dude who seemed like he was invincible and nothing was going to stop him."
Friends also gathered at the crash site Wednesday afternoon. Balloons and flowers sit next to the utility pole that has now been replaced.
"This is probably the most tragic thing I've had happen, but these two kids are amazing," Stern said.
Grief counselors will be available Thursday morning at Red Lion Area Senior High School for students who need them, the school said.