Rising Winston-Salem basketball star killed in wreck

BRUNDIDGE, Ala. — A rising high-school basketball star from Winston-Salem died Friday from injuries suffered in a collision on a southeast Alabama highway, police said.

Authorities said 14-year-old Celeste Burgess was among two killed in the two-vehicle crash on Alabama 93 Friday morning.

Officials said four others were injured. Tammy Johnson, 44, of Banks, Ala. also died at the scene.

Alabama State Troopers said Burgess was a passenger in a Nissan Altima driven by Marcus Peoples, 27, of Warner Robins, Ga.

The wreck happened when a Chrysler Town and Country van driven by Johnson collided with the Altima.

Burgess was taken to Southeast Alabama Medical Center in Dothan and died about five hours later, Sgt. Steve Jarrett of the Alabama Department of Public Safety told the Journal.

Passengers Joshua Townsend, 19, and Tyri Bradham, 23, of Banks were injured, as were Marcus Peoples and Leslie Peoples, 23, of Daleville, Ala. All were taken to hospitals for treatment, police and the Messenger said.

Burgess played a season and a half at Mount Tabor before transferring last December to New Hope Christian Academy in Thomasville, a program coached by Delaney Rudd, a former Wake Forest and NBA guard.

Mount Tabor Girls Basketball coach Rick Anderson said he is still in shock after hearing about the death of his former athlete.

Anderson said the family told him Burgess was visiting her brother in Alabama and they were on their way to a basketball camp at Auburn University before the crash.

“I miss her… Tremendously. It’s hard to believe,” Anderson said. “To lose somebody as special as Celeste, with the talent this young lady had… I just don’t have words for it.”


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