Three Clarksburg High School juniors were killed when their pickup truck crashed on a dark, winding road in Montgomery County late Tuesday.
The three boys were headed south in the 25300 block of Burnt Hill Road in Damascus when their 1989 Ford F-250 left the road and struck a tree as they approached Kingstead Road, according to a preliminary investigation.
Montgomery County Police responded to the scene shortly after 11:35 p.m.
The driver and a passenger were pronounced dead at the scene. Police identified the driver as 17-year-old Jacob Tyler Dennis, of Boyds, and the passenger as 18-year-old Patrick Andrew Shifflett, of Laytonsville.
Another passenger was taken to Suburban Hospital, where he died. Police identified him as 17-year-old Cary Mauri'ce Greene, of Clarksburg.
Montgomery County Police confirmed the three were students at Clarksburg High School. The boys were juniors at the school, News4's Kristin Wright reports.
Police said Dennis recently received his provisional drivers license in March.
Greene had hoped to go to Towson University, said his mother, Danielle Greene.
"Cary was a great kid. He played football for Clarksburg High School and he was so excited about it," Danielle Greene said. "He enjoyed working out. He was just happy.... He was caring, generous, and genuinely cared about and loved his friends and family."
Clarksburg High School was closed Wednesday because the school's off-site graduation ceremony was held Wednesday morning. The school's last day of classes is June 17.
"They had so much life ahead of them and so many opportunities, but things happen so fast," said classmate Fathima Khan. "You can never take life for granted or anything."
Clarksburg High School Principal Steve Whiting said the three friends seemed to be at the center of all school activities.
"They exemplify what Clarksburg's about and it is that strong community, closeness. Very tight friendship group, but they're friends with everybody," Whiting said.
"My boyfriend speaks so good about Jacob Dennis, and so many people are talking about how inspirational Patrick was, and Cary has always been a really warm-hearted person," said student Taya Wims.
The cause of the crash is unknown. Police continue to investigate.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Collision Reconstruction Unit at 240-773-6620; callers may remain anonymous.
At the start of the school year, another Clarksburg High School student was killed after he was struck by a train. John Martin DeReggi, 16, died in September.