Volonte Bell, an assistant men's basketball coach at Chattanooga State and the older brother of New Orleans Saints safety Vonn Bell, was killed in a traffic accident Sunday night, the school confirmed.
The Chattanooga State family is deeply saddened by the passing of Volonte Bell. Volonte was killed in a tragic car accident last night. He has been a valued member of our men's basketball coaching staff for the last three seasons and will be greatly missed.— Chattanooga State Community College (@ChattStateCC) February 24, 2020
Thanks to everyone for all the love and support to my family and I during this time..we're grieving right now, this one hits different.— Vonn Bell (@Vonn) February 24, 2020
Hurt my soul man 💔 lost for words foreal we have memories since college visits man just watch over me I will always remember your energy and your smile you kept on your face wish we could flick it up just one more time. 😢 https://t.co/1z4NySlkJJ— Michael Thomas (@Cantguardmike) February 24, 2020
Chattanooga State head coach Jay Price spoke glowingly to the Chattanooga Times Free Press about Volonte Bell, who was in his third year with the team.
"I spoke with his mother this morning, and she was trying to be strong, but this is just a very sad day for all of us who knew him," Price said. "Volonte was just a positive, energetic guy who was always upbeat. Anybody who met him will tell you the first thing you always noticed was his smile, and that's the thing a lot of us will remember him for.
"This was probably his last year to coach with us because he was too good at such a young age not to be moving up. His personality made him a perfect fit for the coaching world because he never met a stranger, he could talk to anybody and didn't mind working hard. He had such a bright future ahead of him. It's just hard to believe."
The Chattanooga police department would not confirm the names of anyone involved in the accident. But according to police, the 29-year-old male later identified as Bell was pronounced dead on the scene shortly before 10 p.m.
According to police, he was driving a Honda Civic and failed to slow down before striking a trailer that was being towed by a Volvo truck in front of him in the middle lane of traffic.