Former Auburn football star Philip Lutzenkirchen dies in car acc - WRBL

Former Auburn football star Philip Lutzenkirchen dies in car accident

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The Tahoe had flipped several times and finally landed on it's roof in these bushes. The Tahoe had flipped several times and finally landed on it's roof in these bushes.
LaGRANGE, Ga. - Philip Lutzenkirchen, former Auburn tight end and member of the 2010 national championship team, died in a car accident early Sunday morning, officials confirm to News 3.

Lutzenkirchen was 23 years old.

The car crash occurred in Troup County at the intersection of Upper Big Springs Road and Lower Big Springs Road, Troup County Coroner Jeff Cook confirms to News 3. Lutzenkirchen and the driver of the 2006 Chevrolet Tahoe, 22-year-old Joseph Ian Davis, who is a former UGA baseball player, were pronounced dead at the scene at around 5:00 a.m., the coroner said. 

Davis played football and baseball for an Atlanta-area high school. After graduation, he attended the junior college USC Sumter then transferred to UGA to play baseball.

"Heartbroken to hear that Ian Davis has passed away," tweeted UGA baseball coach Scott Stricklin. "Just a great kid that had so much ahead of him. Thoughts and prayers go out to his family."

Cook tells News 3 the two other passengers in the vehicle suffered injuries, one was treated and released and the other is recovering at a local hospital.

Authorities say the driver failed to stop at stop sign and continued into the yard of a church. The vehicle lost control and went about 400 feet before it overturned and flipped several times before landing on its roof, according to the Georgia State Patrol.

Margaret Craig lives right next to church. She says the two passengers that survived rushed to her house, asking her to call 911.

“I heard banging on my door, and hollering and yelling,” said Craig, who immediately called 911. “I came out and there was a boy and a girl out here and they said that they had an accident, that they had flipped in the church yard.”

Authorities say they're still looking into how fast the vehicle was going when it crashed, but said Lutzenkirchen was not wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash.

During his career at Auburn, Lutzenkirchen caught 59 passes for 628 yards and scored 14 touchdowns. Lutzenkirchen is from Marietta, Georgia where he was a standout receiver at Lassiter High School.

Lutzenkirchen signed a free agent contract with the St. Louis Rams following his career at Auburn. He was released four months later because of a hip injury he suffered while Auburn.

"The Auburn Family is broken today with the loss of a great Auburn man and friend Phillip Lutzenkirchen," tweeted Auburn Offensive Coordinator Rhett Lashlee. "Crushed and without words."

"I'm deeply saddened by the untimely passing of Philip Lutzenkirchen," Auburn Coach Gus Malzahn said in a statement. "He was a great young man who touched the lives of everyone he knew in a positive way. On the field, Philip was a great player and competitor, but more importantly, he was a great teammate and friend off the thoughts and prayers are with Philip's parents, Mike and Mary, and all of his family and friends who are grieving his passing. This is a sad day for the entire Auburn family. I find peace knowing that even though Philip was taken from us too soon, that he lived his life to the fullest, leaving a lifetime of great memories for his family and friends to cherish forever."

David Hurst

David Hurst, a graduate of the Univ. of Georgia, is News 3's nightside reporter.

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