Hawaii running back Willis Wilson, who was a walk-on at Washington for three years after completing a stellar prep career at Lakes High School, has died of apparent drowning. He was 21.
From News Tribune reporter Jordan Schrader’s story:
The father of Willis Wilson, 21, called the Lakes football coach Saturday morning to tell him that his son had drowned.“Most of the (conversation) was both of us crying, quite honestly,” said Dave Miller, who coached Wilson on a team that went as far as the Class 3A state semifinals in 2008 and 2009. ”I’ve spoken to a lot of our Lakes football family and everybody is hurting.”
Miller said Wilson was one of the best running backs he has coached over 28 years at Lakes and 15 years as head coach there. He said Wilson rushed for roughly 3,000 yards over two years as a starting running back.
Off the field, Miller said Wilson was gregarious and playful, “very quick to impersonate and have fun and just a very happy-go-lucky kid.”
“From the get-go,” he said, “you could just tell he was a special kid with a special personality and a desire to work to be great.”
The Honolulu Star Advertiser reported the details of Wilson’s death this morning:
According to a Honolulu Fire Department report, Wilson was among a group of three men and two women who were wading in shallow water early this morning. At about 4:30 a.m., they noticed that Wilson was not with them.
HFD and Coast Guard rescuers were summoned. A couple of hours later, Wilson’s body was recovered.