Tragedy hit the Burleson and Johnson County communities as Centennial senior Dawson Barnes was killed Wednesday afternoon in a car crash on Hidden Creek Parkway.
Centennial High School held a candlelight vigil for the baseball standout on Thursday night.
“First time I met him he was in the weight room by himself, working out and I mean working hard. When he wanted something he went after it with everything he had. When he struggled he would do the extra things. He had a fear of failure but his will to win was greater,” said Centennial coach Brian Tickell in comments he shared with school officials who passed his quotes along to the Star-Telegram. “He had a smile that was infectious and a love for baseball, all his friends, and teammates that was unmatched. Family oriented incredible young man. He wanted to be successful in all he did. During tough times he found a way to figure it out and be successful.”
Hundreds of friends, parents, family and coaches came to honor their fallen teammate, who was voted District 5-5A first-team designated hitter last season. He hit .390 with 12 RBIs and 31 runs.
Barnes was also named to the Class 5A all-state team by the Texas Sports Writers Association and the All-Johnson County team by the Cleburne Times Review.
“He wanted to please others and never disappoint. His positive attitude and full of life personality made him a great leader as he mentored the younger guys. He truly cherished his time with his friends and teammates,” Tickell said. “Looked at them as his family. He wanted to be a part of something bigger than himself and wanted his teammates to do the same. A star that shined bright. A kid you would want the whole community to be like.”
The community continued to pay their respect on social media: