Vigil honors Chesterfield teen Tyler Patnaude killed in crash

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CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WTVR) - A vigil was held Sunday evening to celebrate the life of a Cosby High School student killed in a car wreck in Chesterfield County.

Police said three others inside the 2007 Mazda were hurt when the vehicle ran off Woodlake Village Parkway near Clipper Cove Road and hit a tree Friday around 10 p.m.

Tyler Patnaude

Tyler Patnaude

Chesterfield police confirmed 18-year-old Tyler Patnaude of Chesterfield County died in the wreck. The driver and two other passengers were transported to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

Patnaude was a senior at Cosby High School and was a strong believer in his faith, according to friends of the people in the crash.

"He was the kind of person where if you would see him, you would just smile," friend Raphaela Detiger said. Detiger said the teen also loved the water and sailing.

Tyler, who grew up in Texas, moved to Virginia two years ago.

At the Woodlake Pavilion Sunday evening, a sea of red was worn in Tyler’s honor as family and friends lit candles, hugged and shared stories.

Tyler’s mother showed off her son’s favorite sweatshirt. The teen planned to attend New Mexico Military Institute.

The Patenaud family, linked by arms and prayers, said they hold no ill wishes to the driver or to the other young men in the crashed car – and are grateful they sustained only minor injuries. Police are still investigating what caused the crash.

Those gathered at the vigil said the water is a perfect place to mourn because Tyler loved sailing.

"I loved every minute of it. He was such a good friend to me,” said one of Tyler’s friends. “We love him so much and we miss him.”

A memorial service for Tyler will be held at the Clover Hill Assembly of God in Midlothian Tuesday at 3 p.m.


  • Rosa Johnson

    this is so sad. condolences to the family and his classmates. seems like a tragedy happens every year just before the school year ends. pray for our young people.

  • Jason Carlisle

    While I agree that this is very tragic and my thoughts and prayers go out to the kids families, I also hope this will grab kids attention. Take driving seriously. Looking at the pictures I can’t understand how that much damage could be done from hitting a tree on a road with a posted speed limit of 35, unless there were excessive speeds involved.

    • sw

      You are seeing a car that had the jaws of life used on it so it does make the damage look a whole lot worse than it was. When you hit a solid object like a tree going 35 miles an hour the damage will be extensive. It is like hitting another vehicle head on going the same speed as you are.

      • sw

        Sorry KC but you are wrong. If you hit an object like a car which is not solid and it is traveling slower than you are it will damage the other car more than yours if you are traveling the same rate of speed it is like hitting a solid object as a tree or concrete barrier. If you hit a solid object traveling at a certian rate of speed it has the same results as hitting another vehicle head on traveling the exact same speed as you. You don’t have to believe me check the statistics of the crash test that are done on vehicles.

  • Wendy Gayle March

    What do you know about “basic physics” kc? Your alleged scientific commentary is insensitive to this situation and these families. Perhaps you should learn more about and exercise “basic humanity”. The vigil tonight demonstrated the true meaning of community.

    • Joe

      Forced sensitivity is the downfall of modern society. If he/she doesn’t care, let him/her not care.

      That stated, his/her statement is correct, there would be more force in a two vehicle in motion head on collision than a single vehicle collision into a static object.

  • Vicky

    As your morning team reported this tragedy, the anchor commented on this being a reminder for parents to remind their kids that with prom season here, they should not drink and drive. Certainly a valid point, but this accident did not in any way involve alcohol, as the anchor’s insensitive comments implied. I did not know the young man or his family, but it seems to me they are dealing with enough, without having to deal with a professional newscaster misleading viewers to believe that alcohol was somehow involved. Please correct this insensitive comment made by your morning guy.

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