August 14, 2014

Austin man killed after Rangers game in Arlington

Jay Wolf, 24, was struck by a motorist in the westbound lanes of Interstate 30 about midnight Tuesday.

Jay Wolf was excited about watching his Tampa Rays square off with the Texas Rangers on Tuesday evening.

The 24-year-old Tampa native drove from his home in Austin and landed seats near home plate for his first game at Globe Life Park in Arlington. He posted a photo of the view from his seats on Facebook.

His mother, Jennifer Poe Wolf, was encouraging. “Have fun and be careful,” she wrote on his Facebook page Tuesday hours before the first pitch was thrown.

About midnight after the game, Wolf was walking in westbound lanes in the 2300 block of Tom Landry Freeway when he was fatally struck by a vehicle.

The motorist stopped, and the driver has been cooperating with investigators, Arlington police Sgt. Jeff Houston said Thursday.

Investigators haven’t determined why Wolf was walking or why he was in traffic lanes.

Arlington police said Thursday the investigation was still in the early stages.

“The [medical examiner] will have to determine the intoxication question,” said Houston in a Thursday email. “And that could take several weeks.”

“My heart sank when I heard the news,” said friend Kyle Sando of Minneapolis, Minn., in a phone interview.

“Jay was such a great guy. It was so unexpected to hear how he died. I still have just as many questions about what happened.”

Wolf, 24, was the grandson of Haven Poe, a former Tampa City Council member and Hillsborough County commissioner, and her husband, retired businessman Charles Poe.

He graduated from Tampa’s Plant High School in 2009, and moved to Austin a year ago to pursue a career as a musician.

“It’s been rough,” Jennifer Poe Wolf told the Tampa Bay Times. “I’m not coping very well. When it’s your parent, it’s hard, but when it’s your child, it’s devastating,”

“We just want to send out our sincere condolences,” Rays manager Joe Maddon told the Tampa Bay Times on Wednesday. “My goodness, it has to be awful being a parent or a grandparent. It’s just a really tough day. So our thoughts and prayers go back to the people in Tampa, to the Wolf family. It’s an awful moment. I wanted to acknowledge that today.”

In 2013, Wolf earned a degree in audio production from Middle Tennessee State University. He moved to Austin shortly after graduation and joined the music scene there.

He worked delivering pizzas and tended bar at the Horseshoe Lounge in Austin.

Wolf had found a home in Austin, according to his Facebook page.

“I’ve been in Austin a year now. I know I made the right decision movin here. I’ve made some of the best friends; y’all are generous, talented and funny, got two great jobs and am always gettin into something,” Wolf wrote on July 18.

“I couldn’t be happier where I live and with those around. So thanks to everyone that has made texas home for me. I owe it to more people than I can name and hope to repay you somehow. Texas forever.”

Funeral arrangements were pending Thursday.

This story includes information from the Tampa Bay Times.

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