Coach Cited for Fatal Rowing Team Van Crash in Florida
A former women's crew coach at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester has been issued a traffic citation in connection with a fatal crash in Florida that took the life of one young rower and injured nearly a dozen others, including Marion resident Hannah Strom.
The "case is closed" with the issuance of a uniform traffic citation naming 55-year-old Patrick Diggins, according to a traffic homicide investigation report released Friday by the Vero Beach Police Department. Diggins, 55, of Holden, was cited for failing to yield when making a left-hand turn, the report states.
On Jan. 15, Diggins was driving a van containing members of the Holy Cross women's rowing team when he failed to exercise proper caution while making a left-hand turn. The van collided with a pickup truck on Indian River Boulevard at 7:28 a.m., the report states.
Following the crash, Diggins made "several spontaneous utterances" in the presence of police, the report states. “Please let me have had a green light, did I have a green arrow, God please let me have had a green arrow," he reportedly said.
The rowing tea was visiting Florida for a week of training. Eleven crew members were in the van, including 20-year-old star rower Grace Rett, who was killed. Strom, whose family owns the Kool Kone restaurant in Marion, was severely injured.
Strom continues to recover at Massachusetts General Hospital, Sippican Week reports.