WBRZ News

LSU cheer coach, 4 others hurt in boat crash

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Posted: Aug 29, 2011 11:01 AM by Rachel Frost
Updated: Aug 29, 2011 11:01 AM
Source: WBRZ

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Topics: LSU, cheerleading, coach, others, injured, boat, crash, accident, Diversion Canal

ST. AMANT, La. - Members of the LSU cheerleading squad got updates today on the condition of an assistant coach who was hurt in a boat crash over the weekend.

An assistant LSU cheerleading coach, two other adults and two minors were injured when their boat crashed Saturday into a pier on the Diversion Canal near the Tiki Hut.

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries says Chico Garcia, 29, an assistant coach of the LSU cheer squad, was one of the victims involved in the crash. Wildlife and Fisheries identified the other victims as Jack Riffle, 41; Elizabeth Riffle, 44; a 15-year-old girl and a 13-year-old boy.

Wildlife and Fisheries agents are investigating what caused Jack Riffle to lose control of the boat and crash into the pier. On a website posted for Garcia, called Get Well Chico, his mother says the accident happened after they were cut off by another boat.

According to the website, Garcia was airlifted to the hospital and is currently in ICU. The website also says Garcia suffered a significant spinal cord injury and has no feeling or movement from the neck down. The other victims were also taken to the hospital with injuries.

Garcia cheered at LSU from 2002 to 2006 and has been an assistant coach since then.

Rachel Frost will have more reaction from the LSU cheerleaders coming up tonight on News 2.

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