There’s unfortunately some very sad and heartbreaking news coming out of Salt Lake City Friday afternoon as multiple media outlets are reporting the wife of a Utah football player was killed in a car accident Thursday night.
Janelle Tongaonevai, whose husband is Utes defensive lineman Ron Tongaonevai, was one of two people who died as a result of injuries suffered in a crash that occurred in West Valley City, about 12 miles outside of Salt Lake City. The vehicle in which Tongaonevai was riding/driving was broadsided in an intersection by another vehicle that had run a red light; police officers on the scene do not suspect alcohol or drugs were a cause of the crash.
The accident occurred at 10:30 p.m. local time, roughly an hour and a half after the Utes’ season-opening win over Montana State.
“Our hearts go out to Ron and families and friends on both sides of the marriage for the tragic loss of his wife Janelle,” said Utah coach Kyle Whittingham in a statement. “This is a devastating loss for everyone involved in our program. Our players and staff are grieving for Ron and our top priority is to give him our support.”
Ron and Janelle were married in the summer of 2010. She was just 25 years old.
It goes without saying that our thoughts, prayers and condolences go out to Janelle Tongaonevai’s husband, family, friends and anyone else affected by this unimaginable tragedy.
(Tip O’ the Cap: Mark Ennis)