Student killed after being hit by train

Connor Spielmaker

UNF student Joey Kawchak was killed Wednesday April 6 when he was hit by a train in Hilliard, Florida.

According to Undersheriff George Lueders of the Nassau County Sheriff’s Office, a north-bound CSX freight train struck Kawchak Wednesday around 1 p.m. The identification on him identified him as Kawchak, though they had not released that name yet pending confirmation from the medical examiner. Pauline Kawchak, Joey’s mother, posted on facebook confirming that her son had passed.

 Screenshot from Facebook
Screenshot from Facebook

Morgan Saylor, a friend of Kawchak’s, told Spinnaker that he loved music.

“Music was his life,” she said. “He’d been in multiple bands since he was in high school. He loved writing and playing music.”

Joey was known for his friendships.

“Joey was a great friend to those who knew him,” said Saylor. “He really cared about other people.”

According to Saylor, Kawchak also leaves behind an elementary-school-aged little brother, Gabe.

“Those were his two favorite things. Music and Gabey.”

The Nassau Country Sheriff’s Office is investigating why he may have been on the tracks, and what lead to the accident.

Spinnaker will continue to follow this story as more information comes available.


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