Kaelin Kersh, a track and field athlete for the Mississippi State Bulldogs, died in a car accident early Sunday morning. She was 22, and died just two days after she graduated.
WTVA-TV reported that Kersh was riding in the back seat of a car when it was struck by a Mississippi Highway Patrol SUV. The patrol said the trooper was headed east on a road when a Toyota Corolla with Kersh and two others entered the highway.
The trooper, as well as two others in the Corolla, were injured in the crash.
MSU’s track and field coach, and athletics director, each put out statements via the MUS website:
“I will always remember Kaelin by her incredible smile,” MSU track and field coach Steve Dudley said. “Kaelin always had a positive attitude and this was contagious to everyone around her. Kaelin was a member of the most successful era of women’s track and field at Mississippi State and that was largely due to the tight bond between her and her teammates. We all loved her, and Kaelin will remain in our hearts forever. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the entire Kersh family and to the other families involved.”
“The entire Mississippi State family mourns the tragic loss of Kaelin,” MSU Director of Athletics John Cohen said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with Kaelin’s family, friends, teammates and coaches. She represented Mississippi State in a first-class manner and earned her degree. We will be here to provide support and comfort to her family and teammates during the grieving process.”
Kersh ran in the Bulldogs’ distance events and relays. She helped capture the distance medley relay at the 2016 Alabama Relays, and was a member of the 4×400 relay teams this year.