The Meridian Star
Tragedy struck the Mississippi football community Wednesday, as former East Central Community College and current University of Mississippi offensive lineman Park Stevens was killed in a traffic accident in Chickasaw County.
The 20-year-old Stevens of Columbus was killed when his pickup collided into the rear of an 18-wheeler at Egypt Road and U.S. Highway 45A around 3 p.m. Wednesday. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
“When you lose somebody that you are close to, that you spend so much time with, it leaves a void,” said former East Central head coach Brian Anderson who coached Stevens as a Warrior. “It’s in your mind, and you can’t really wrap your brain around what has happened.”
Anderson described Stevens as a captivating individual whose presence on the field was equally matched by his actions off of it.
“He wasn’t just a player,” Anderson said. “Park added a lot as a person to our program. Of course he was a good player, he 6-7, 340 pounds, but he was as kind as he was large.
“In the dormitory is where Park made his impact on our team as much as anywhere. Park’s glass was always half full, and it didn’t matter where he was or what he was doing –– he was going to have fun.”
A leader for the Warriors, Anderson said Stevens would always be there for his teammates, often offering up trips to his home during holidays for out-of-state players.
“That’s just the type of man he was,” Anderson said. “There was always an open door, always an open arm. He was a friend to everybody.”
Parker was starter for the Warriors in 2012 and was planning on redshirting during his first year at Ole Miss.