This is heartbreaking. I can't imagine how the players' families must
be grieving at this time, as well as the team about to head into camp. I was
friends with Chelsey Peterson in high school, who went on to run track at BYU
and was killed in an accident her freshman year, I believe, and it was
devastating on the community. I pray that Uhatafe will pull through. Heaven got
a blue chipper today.
This is real sad news. My heart goes out to all of their families.
Our prayers are with the families of both players, and I certainly hope that
Salesi manages torecover. A sad day for all football fans in the state.
Condolences to the players' families and to their Utah family. Our prayers
are with their families as they cope with this tragic situation.
Horrible, horrible news. 3 lives lost, and one in critical condition. I just
finished a road trip of my own this past weekend, on full rest, hopefully this
story will prevent someone else from drowsy driving. Prayers go out to the
family and friends!
My heartfelt and sincere condolences are extended to the family, friends , and
loved ones of this fine young man. My prayers are with them in this time of
sorrow, and I sincerely hope that, the one in critical condition is able to pull
through. I know they wanted to continue playing together on the same college
team. I grieve for them and their parents.It is one of life's major
injustices to have a parent outlive their child.Today I hurt , not because of
UTE football , but to have such a trauma cast upon the loved ones of these
student-athletes cut down in the prime of youth. A sad day indeed .
Thoughts and prayers go out to all of those who have lost a loved in this
accident. Terrible and tragic news. Blessings upon you all...
This is the worst news a family can receive. Especially being involved in
athletics, they have many close friends and teammates mourning their loss as
well. Here's hoping that Uhatafe pulls through.
What aweful news, very tragic. It makes me sad to think about the families that
are having to endure this and all the possibilities lost for these young people.
Just a terrible thing to hear.
My heart goes out to all those effected by this terribly tragic event. You will
be in my prayers.
A very sad day for the families and friends of these young men. My heart-felt
prayers and condolences to all who have cause to mourn this day because of this
Condolences to the families and friends - my heartfelt prayers for you to be
comforted in this time of trial.
1 bright spot in this horrible tragedy is that Uhatafe has thankfully been
released from the hospital.
Brings things into Perspective.Prayers and Blessings to those involved and
those who mourn.
Tragic.Duckhunter, thanks for the classy words.
So tragic. And it makes the Red/Blue rivalry seem petty and silly in comparison.
Football 5th? Maybe 5th ranks too high as well...
This Cougar fan is sending well wishes to the families involved and the
University of Utah family. May you find peace on this sad day.
A Monday morning Twitter post by Manukainio indicated that drowsiness may have
been a factor. The Tweet read: "22 hour drive back to Texas on no sleep. Oh
my."Far too often, drowsy driving is a factor in these tragic
accidents.Condolences to the families and friends of these young
Very sad news!!! Our hearts and prayers go out to all involved in the Ute Nation
and beyondThese young men will be missed by all family, friends,
teammates, classmates, and others!!!Go Cougs!!!Go Utes!!!
It's always difficult and sad to hear of anyone losing their life, but when
they are so young and have so much ahead of them it seems to hurt more. My
deepest condolences to the families, players, and coaches at Utah & Texas
A&M who lost brothers, cousins, friends and teammates. Glad to hear that
Uhatafe will be ok physically, but my heart aches for the psychological pain he
will experience. My prayers are with him.
On Sept 21 at Lavell Edwards Stadium I hope that we can all come together and
have a moment of silence and prayer before the game.
This is sad news. Please, please, please don't try to drive while drowsy.
It's better to arrive somewhere late than not at all.
Godspeed! and God Bless the friends and family of those loved and lost.
To the families and Ute Nation involved in this tragedy! God bless you all!!!!
You are in our hearts!!!!
This is very sad. I wish the best to the families, friends, and teams of these
Sad news. Prayers and condolences to all involved
@MalihiniAgreed. I will be at LES for the game and regardless of
whether or not there is a formal moment of silence for this young man (and the
others who died), I know I will stand and have a moment of silence and a silent
prayer in his honor.That which unites us should be so much stronger
and deeper than the silly things that divide us.
This is just tragic. Coug fan here wishing all of Ute nation a speedy healing.
Our prayers are with you.
A horrible tragedy for any family to endure. Including the gridiron families of
the Ute and Aggie Nation. RIP!
This is so sad on so many different levels. May God bless the Ute and A&M
programs and may he provide peace and comfort to the families of these young men
during this difficult time. Godspeed boys and may you Rest In Peace.To the Aggie and Cougar fans posting here thanks for your well wishes and your
class. Like one Cougar fan wrote I too hope that before both the games with the
Cougars and Aggies the teams can come together for a moment of silence for these
young men. The rivalries may be intense at times but that is because you
don't want to loose to your brother. In the end isn't that what these
boys are? Brothers, Son's, Uncle's, Cousin's and Father's.
Their all good and who they play for dose nothing to take away from that.
I pray God will watch over all of the players of our great state and
keep them healthy and free from harm during this season.Go
Cougars!Go Aggies!Go Ute's!
Condolences to the families of these two young men. I cannot imagine the
heartache of having to bury your son, although the gospel does give hope and
understanding as to why such tragic things happen. Condolences to Kyle
Whittingham, his coaching staff and players as well. I can only imagine how
difficult it must be . . .
Sad, sad news. Vaenuku sounds like he was not only an exceptional football
player, but an exceptional young man. Tragic his life had to end so soon.
Thoughts and prayers.
A sad day for Utah football! My heart and prayers go out to his family, the U
of U football team, and the Ute fans. You never like to hear about any football
team losing a great teammate and person like this.
Devastating news - best to the immediate, and Ute family.
Horribly sad news for those families, friends and for the U and TAMU. I can
only imagine the loss felt by Salesi and his father. Such a tragic loss. Puts
everything into perspective.
Absolutely horrible news. Thoughts and prayers to his family and loved ones.
Terrible tragedy. Condolences to everyone that knew any of those killed.Please, please be careful driving and wear your seatbelts.
We, as Ute fans, share the grief of such a tragic event. May the families take
pride in the love that so many felt towards these fine men. I, along with so
many, was sadden when Polo committed to Texas A & M. We were elated when
Gaius "Kuio" and Salesi joined our football family. Yes, we looked
forward them as football players; however, as these comments show, we also
looked forward to them being teammates, friends, and fellow students. We pray
for peace and blessings on the families at this time and R.I.P. Gaius, Polo, and
Condolences to the Vaenuku family. Very sad news. Thoughts and prayers are with
Malihini:"On Sept 21 at Lavell Edwards Stadium I hope that we can all
come together and have a moment of silence and prayer before the game."I think that is a very good idea. This is a loss, certainly to Ute
Nation and the families of these honorable young men, but also a loss of a
future missionary preparing for his selfless service in the field. RIP Keio,
Cougar Nation mourns your loss and our prayers and faith go out to your family
and friends, as well as those of the Uhatafe family with the loss of their 13 yr
old son and brother. Football seems so meaningless when life reminds us how
insignificant it really is. My heart and prayers go out to all my Ute brothers
@DuckhunterThank you for your compassion toward a Ute recruit.
Very, very sad news! Our hearts go out to Vaenuku's family and the others
who were involved in this tragic accident.
Deepest condolences to the families, friends, and teammates from this devout
Cougar fan. Life is too precious to get consumed by athletic rivalries.
Tragic news. My condolences and prayers to the families. May God bless them
with comfort in a time of loss.
What a horrible tragedy! My thoughts and prayers go out to the families and
friends of these young men. May the Lord encircle them in the arms of His love
during their grief.
Have driven that road (US 550) many times going to, or coming home from, Utah.
Now that it's a four-lane (but generally not divided) highway, the biggest
worry there is usually drunk drivers (and New Mexico has a lot of them);
unfortunately, however, many a drowsy driver has met a cruel fate along that
route as well. Here's hoping that the families may find comfort in
thoughts of a glorious reunion in the herafter.
Horrible. Just horrible. Very sad for them, their families and the friends and
coaches they had. Tough loss. Heart goes out to the Ute fans. Keeps the
rivalries in perspective.
The article reminds us that there are great young people everywhere and the
death or absence of just one affects us all!Deepest condolences to
all those directly affected by this loss and best wishes for Uhatafe to be able
to live on to his highest potential. May family, friends and teammates find the
comfort they need to turn the loss of these three young men into something of
value in their lives.
What a terrible and tragic loss of such young promising lives! May God's
love gives comfort and peace to the grieving family and the Ute nation as a
whole. My deepest sympathies and condolences to all of them. May the all rest
in peace!From a Cougar faithful, Go Utes!!!
Thoughts and prayers to Utes and Aggies...and mostly to the families of these
young men. Although I can feel tears welling up as I type this, I'm also
encouraged by the brotherhood inspired by the tragic deaths of these young men.
Thanks to all.
Our heartfelt prayers to the families. What a tragedy when young people with
such a bright future are taken in death.
Tragic accident. Prayers going out to the families involved. Hope the family can
find comfort in knowing how beloved this young man was by so many.
Heart felt condolences for the family and the U of U. I have enjoyed the
comments showing compassion from both sides. This is definitely a time to put
aside the petty differences that we have to support a loving family and the U of
U for losing a great young man.
Very sad and tragic for the young men that were killed and the families
involved. Thoughts and prayers go out to those families at this time
I am glad to see the fans of various rival universities coming together to mourn
the loss of these exceptional and talented young men. My heart goes out to their
families, friends and associates. They must be suffering terribly at this time.
I lost a friend in high school to drowsy driving. It made a huge impression on
me. Please, please, please if you feel tired pull over in a safe place and even
better plan ahead to rest prior to a trip and make planned stops. This is so
tragic. I do not want this to happen to any other drivers and their families.
This is not meant to be a criticism to the victims in any way. Everyone is
already suffering enough.
The Ute-Cougar Rivalry to me has always been a lot of fun...Nasty at times, but
never really vicious, or full of genuine hatred. It s like the rivalry between
Cal and Stanford, UCLA and USC and Illinois and Northwestern.Although I am a fan of the University of Utah...and I always express how much
I hate BYU...I like to see that both Utes and Cougar fans can come together,
without animosity, to express sorrow at the deaths of these young gentlemen.
My deepest sympathies to the family, friends and to UteNation for this tragic
loss.I drive 50,000 + miles a year for my company. We are constantly
reminded of the dangers of driving. This is a terrible way to be reminded by
reading these kinds of stories. It's just mind numbing.Everyone
take a moment and reflect on your driving situations and be safe out there.
When things like this happen it puts the BYU and Utah rivalry where it
belongs...way way down our lists. Good to see so many good comments from both
sides. May the lord bless those who have lost loved ones and may the Holy
Spirit comfort them. And may the comfort be shared with all the coaches,
players and fans of the Utes and Texas A&M families.
He is now on his mission, just on the other side. Your family will hug you
again Elder Vaenuku.
Tragic. Unfortunately an oft repeated scenario. SUV drifts off the road,
driver overcorrects, vehicle rolls. Only the driver was wearing a seatbelt.
Drives ED should do more to teach drivers how to avoid tragedies like this. SUVs
are not a car and don't handle like a car. My condolences to the families.
Mr. Red - now over 30 years ago, Steve Young was driving UT to CT and a similar
sleep incident caused a fatality. We remember it, and it's easy to feel
the pain for the UoU and TAMU. I hope this young driver has family and
friends to help him through it. Condolences to all involved.
Our family is very sad to say good bye to Gaius, I was looking forward to
watching him play for Utah but more important seeing him go on his mission, I
never did got to see him play in high school and I told him last month in our
family reunion in San Francisco that I will definitely come over to Utah to root
for him. How i wish that I can turn back the time so I can just see him play.
The Vaenuku family wants to thank all of you for your prayers and comments
about Gaius. We are sad that we are no longer with him but grateful for the Plan
of Salvation to know that he still lives on. One lesson I learn from this do not
procrastinate and time is very short. Ofa Atu
Very sad story. It's kind of scary to think that things like this just
happen out of nowhere. I think about my own life and wonder if I'd be ready
to go if it happened to me.Life is just too short and valuable to worry
about things that really don't matter.I like the idea of the
moment of silence for this year's rivalry game. I hope fans on both sides
can just have fun and enjoy the game. I'm sure that is what this young man
would have wanted. I wish the families well and hope we can all just try to
enjoy life and focus more on the things that matter most.
So sad, i keep watching these clips of Gaius 'Keio' Vaenuku. How
awesome of a football player he was. also watched his family here in utah in
their comments of tv. What a great guy man.
This isn't good. My heart goes out to those involved, their families, and
the entire Ute nation. God Bless you all.
I have not read all the comments so I may be repeating a sentiment already
expressed.I hope every young person who reads this article will
focus on the fact that these young people were not wearing their seat belts. It
does not matter how big you are, how strong you are, how much weight you can
bench press, how fast you can run the 40, if you do not wear your seat belt and
you car rolls over you will be severly injured if not killed. By simply wearing
their seat belts we would be reading about injuries, probably some quite
serious, but we would be praying for their recovery and return to activity
instead of expressing our regrets at their deaths.
What a very sad situation. These young men had their whole lives ahead of them.
This cougar fan's thoughts and prayers are with Utenation on this sad
A traggic loss. My thoughts and prayers goes out to the family and friends of
this young man. As well to the ute football team.
I guess if you are a native Hawaiian, your comment is unauthorized. Native
Hawaiian does not have swear words like Tongan or Samoan does, so stop freaking
out DN:Unfortunately, your comment was not approved for the
following reason: * Comment included web links, excessive ALL-CAPS
or punctuation, excessive length or violated other formatting rules.We would invite you to edit and resubmit your comment using the following
guidelines: * Comments should be thoughtful and helpful to your
fellow readers with additional insight or counterpoints to the article.
* Avoid personal attacks and other inappropriate responses to fellow readers. * Treat other readers as you would if you were speaking to them from a
microphone, looking them in the eyes, then passing the microphone cordially to
the next contributor.If you would like to revise the following
comment to comply with DeseretNews.com policy you may resubmit it by logging in
and commenting directly from the story again.********************Auwe. So sad. But thank goodness for the Great Plan of Happiness. Our
ho'omaikaʻi no na ʻohana.
This is even sadder with a day to think about it. Such a tragedy. I feel
terrible for the friends and families of these young men.
Duckhunter, agreed, man. In the middle of a cross-country drive myself,
it's almost too sobering to think about, and makes me pray for and be
thankful for my own safety.