Abingdon High to honor student killed in I-81 crash during graduation


Virginia State Police has identified the victim of Thursday night’s fatal crash as Kirk E. Nairn, 18, of Abingdon, Virginia. 

Nairn was an Abingdon High School student and multi-sport athlete at the school. 

Abingdon soccer coach Jordan Blackson remembered Nairn as a leader, both on and off the field. 

“I knew Kirk beyond soccer,” Blackson said. “He was a leader both on and off the field, and there’s no exaggeration to that. He supported all his teammates. He was such a great person.” 

Friday afternoon University of Kentucky officials released a statement telling News Channel 11 that Kirk Nairn was planning to attend this fall and partake in the ROTC program.

“The University of Kentucky family was saddened to learn about the sudden passing of Kirk Nairn,” said UK President Eli Capilouto. “Though he won’t be with us in the fall pursuing his commitment to ROTC and his interest in international studies, he and his family always will be part of our Big Blue Nation. The collective thoughts and prayers of our campus community are with his family at this time.”

-University of Kentucky President, Eli Capilouto

The crash remains under investigation and alcohol has not been determined as a factor in the crash, according to VSP. 


Virginia State Police is continuing to investigate a fatal crash from overnight on Interstate 81 in Washington County, Virginia. 

According to Bristol Virginia Fire Chief Mike Armstrong, there were two separate crashes on I-81.

During the overnight crash, a car struck the rear of a tractor-trailer. According to the chief, the driver of the car died on the scene. There was no update on the driver of the tractor-trailer. 

Traffic was held up for a significant amount of time overnight. 

Virginia State Police is handling the investigation into the crash and is expected to release more information later today. 

The first crash also resulted in a car striking a tractor-trailer outside of the Bristol city limits. The driver sustained injuries but is expected to make a full recovery.  

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