The Washington Post

One twin dies, another is injured in Prince George’s car crash

Students at Dr. Henry A. Wise Jr. High School are mourning a former classmate who died Monday night in a car crash.

Prince George’s County police say speed may have been a factor in the Upper Marlboro accident that killed 17-year-old Alex Edward Cole and injured four other people, including Alex’s twin brother.

Alex Cole died after the Hyundai he was riding in veered into oncoming traffic and hit another car on Ritchie Marlboro Road on Monday, police said.

The driver of the Hyundai was Alex’s twin brother, Aaron, who remains in serious condition, Wise Principal Carletta Marrow said. Police, however, did not confirm whether Aaron was the driver of the car.

Both graduated from Wise in Upper Marlboro in May. Also in the car was Addison Ford, 17, also a student at Wise, Morrow said. A 23-year-old who also graduated from Wise was in the car, Morrow said.

The woman driving the BMW involved in the accident was hurt, but her injuries were not life-threatening, said Officer Harry Bond, a Prince George’s police spokesman. No charges have been filed in the accident and police are investigating.

Alex Cole was known at the school for his “jovial, friendly” demeanor, Marrow said. He was the type of person who knew how to put a smile on everyone’s face, she said.

“He was very pleasant, a jokester,” Marrow said. “His teachers said he was the kind of child you wanted in your classroom. He made jokes, but appropriate ones. He knew how to bring you laughter every day.”

Marrow said Alex Cole returned to the school about two weeks ago to talk to some of his former teachers, sharing with them his plans to enlist in the Air Force.

Alex Cole and his brother were part of the school’s JROTC program and AMANTE, a male mentoring program.

Marrow said the students at Wise were coping. Cole’s friends and students at Wise posted Twitter messages Tuesday reacting to the news. Some asked others to support his brother and father and remember the “good times” with Cole.

“The students are doing pretty good this morning,” Morrow said. “It was more of a shock with the staff.”

A crisis team met with several students Tuesday, and Marrow sent a letter home to parents. The Cole family could not be reached for comment.

Ovetta Wiggins covers Maryland state politics in Annapolis.
Lynh Bui is a Prince George's County public safety reporter and former Montgomery County education reporter.

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