TIFTON -- A father who lost his only son and his son's girlfriend in a car wreck on Jekyll Island early Thursday morning is trying to console the friend who was driving the vehicle when the wreck happened.

Randolph "Blake" Day, 19, and his girl friend, Priscilla "Danielle" Boone, 18, of Darien, who both worked as lifeguards in Jekyll Island, were killed. Day and Boone were riding in an SUV with fellow lifeguard Jonathan Gonzalez, 19, of Valdosta. Gonzalez is listed in stable condition at Southeast Georgia Regional Medical Center in Brunswick.

"I talked with him and tried to tell him accidents happen," said Randy Day, Blake's father. "All he could do is cry and say he was sorry."

Blake Day graduated from Tift County High School in 2002 and attended ABAC last fall. Day said his son planned to lifeguard this summer at Summer Waves and then return to college this fall.

"He was talking about going to school over there (near Jekyll) because of her (Danielle)," Day said. "They had just really gotten together. I spoke with her mother, and she was getting the same input.

"They were in love. That is the real tragedy."

Friends were arriving at the Days' home in Tifton Thursday to be with the family.

"A couple of his friends are outside right now washing his car," Day said. "We decided to park it at the church so everyone would know Blake is there."

Day said he and his family decided they really didn't need a lot of flowers and plants, so they are asking for anyone who wishes to contribute to the Shannon Day Scholarship Fund at Colony Bank here instead. Shannon is Blake's 9-year-old sister.

"We just thought Blake would like that," Day said.

According to an article that ran in the Thursday edition of the Florida Times Union, the accident happened at 1:30 a.m. when the Nissan Xterra Gonzalez was driving veered off Stable Road at a curve, struck a huge oak tree and burst into flames.

A Ford F150 pickup truck then collided with the Xterra after it bounced off the tree, and its two occupants pulled Gonzalez from the burning vehicle, said Cpl. Chad Riner of the Georgia State Patrol's Jekyll Island post.

The pickup was driven by 21-year-old Scott Hartley of St. Simons Island, Riner said. Hartley and a passenger in his vehicle were not seriously injured.

The crash was in front of Jekyll Island's history center and less than a third of a mile from the island's fire department in Jekyll Island's historic district. Firefighters responded quickly and extinguished the burning vehicle.

Tony King, manager of Summer Waves, said Day had been a lifeguard for three years and Boone for four. Staff members said the two had formed a close bond. King described both as "tremendous guards, very competent in all they did and very well-liked ..."

"One thing I'll remember with both of them is their smiles," he said.

Bill Donohue, executive director of the Jekyll Island Authority, said that the Authority is "trying to make sure we support the families and staff."

Jekyll Island pastors were meeting with Summer Waves staff members to provide counseling.

"We want to meet with the staff. Some went home, understandably. Others are trying to work their shifts," Donohue said.



To contact reporter Angie Thompson, call 382-4321, ext. 208

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