Rick Neuheisel Comments on Wednesday's Tragedy

Sept. 13, 2001

'We are obviously shocked by the news that 16 of our fans lost their lives in the plane wreck in Mexico. We have the best fans in the country, as evidenced by how many of them left for what was supposed to be a weekend of fun in Miami, and unfortunately ended up tragic. Our thoughts go out to all of the families involved, and all those touched by catastrophe.

'When you have tragedy upon tragedy, you start to ask, 'when is it going to stop?' I wrote a letter which will go out to the families Friday, touching on the passion that exists in the program from those who follow intercollegiate athletics here on campus. More than just football, those people cared about the University, our athletic programs, and each other. That is unique, and we'll miss that in our program.

'Willie Hurst and our other captains wanted to know what the team could do as a tribute to those who perished in Mexico, as well as those involved in Tuesday's tragedy. We will be wearing some sort of symbol on our uniforms this season as a tribute to those people, and we also held a moment of silence before today's practice, as a means of showing the proper respect to those who perished.

'This is shocking, shocking news - horrible news - for those involved with the University of Washington.'

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