Poway High students honor classmate who died suddenly - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Poway High students honor classmate who died suddenly

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BY Craig McKee Follow Craig on TwitterFollow Craig on Facebook

POWAY (CBS8) - For high schools Friday night is about brute force on the grid iron, screaming fans, and touchdowns.  However, while the rivalry between Rancho Bernardo and Poway High played out on Poway's field, classmates of 17 year old Poway High Senior Tyler Peterson were honoring their friend by wearing black in the stands.

Tyler died just this past Wednesday after collapsing while getting ready for school.

Just before the game friends and family gathered on the field and held a moment of silence and released 17 balloons representing Tyler's age.

"His girlfriend was out there too and his sisters, his sisters-in-law and his brothers," said Senior Coral Lopez. "It was really a sense of closure not only for them but for the entire senior class."

 His friends describe him as a kind hearted person, who could befriend anyone.

"Tyler was really, really outgoing, he was funny and great to be around. He just made everybody laugh and  he was that kind of person that everybody knew and everybody wanted to know him," Poway High Sophomore Dannielle Elliott said.

"He was able to like look at a situation from the positive perspective, keep it kind - he wouldn't hurt a  fly," explained Senior Jefferson Richards. He adds he moved to Poway two years ago and he says Tyler was one of the first people he met. "Just welcomed me with open arms."

Tyler had a signature look with a black shirt and a single chain, something many here duplicated Friday night in his honor.

"He was like a giant teddy bear older brother to everybody. I mean if he didn't know you and you were crying he would go up and try to help you the best he could," said Lopez. "He's definitely going to be missed a lot."

In a news release Poway High Principal Scott Fisher said, "Tyler will be remembered as a positive and friendly individual who was well-liked by both students and teachers. His goal was to work with young people in the community by coaching a youth basketball team for his Senior Project."

The Medical Examiner's Office says it could take up to three months before we know for sure what caused Tyler to collapse and die at his home.

Friends of the family tell News 8 they are grateful for the huge outpouring of support during this difficult time.

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