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Three teens killed in Armstrong County wreck

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By Richard Robbins
Sunday, Nov. 13, 2011

A crash on Friday night in Armstrong County killed three Punxsutawney teens and left one in critical condition.

Punxsutawney High School assistant principal Darren Hack called the deaths of Sean David McConnaughey, 18, Joel Riggleman, 18, and Dylan Behrendt, 19, "very shocking."

The teens were 2011 graduates of the high school.

A fourth person in the vehicle, Blair Smith, 19, of Punxsutawney, was taken to Allegheny General Hospital, North Side, where he was in critical condition, state police said.

The crash occurred about 10:30 p.m. on Route 839 in Wayne Township.

State police at Kittanning said McConnaughey's vehicle went off the road and rolled over several times. All four occupants were ejected.

State police said they are trying to determine why McConnaughey's vehicle went off the road, as well as where the four were seated at the time of the crash.

McConnaughey suffered head injuries, according to Deputy Coroner Robert Bellas.

A spokesman for the Allegheny County Medical Examiner's Office said autopsy results for Behrendt and Riggleman were incomplete.

Funeral arrangements for Behrendt and McConnaughey are being handled by McCabe Funeral Home in Punxsutawney, a spokeswoman at the funeral home said.

Hack said grief counselors will be on hand for students at the high school when classes resume.

"They were nice young men," Hack said of the three friends. "I'm really saddened."

A faculty member, Alan Nichol, called the deaths "tragic."

Nichol and several other teachers refused to say more out of respect for the families.

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