Carter Payne, a 2019 Phoenix Shadow Mountain High School graduate who played two years of football in Michigan before heading to a USL level, was killed in a hit-and-run in Statesboro, Georgia, early Saturday .
According to Statesboro police, Payne, 21, was riding a Lime electric scooter when he was struck by a vehicle. The driver then fled. Payne was airlifted to a hospital in Savannah, Georgia, where he died of his injuries.
After spending his second year playing for the varsity team at Shadow Mountain, Payne started playing for the Barcelona Residency Academy at Casa Grande.
“We are devastated by the tragic loss of one of our own, a former Barca player, Carter Payne,” the academy wrote in a statement on Sunday. “Carter was an amazing brother, teammate and student-athlete who will be sorely missed. We send our love and support to Carter’s family and friends during this extremely difficult time. »
Payne played for Tormenta FC 2 in USL League Two. He also previously played for Oregon-based PDX FC after spending the 2019 and 2020 seasons at Michigan, where he was an Academic All-Big Ten selection.
On Sunday, Tormenta FC created the Carter Payne Fund. The donations will go to Payne’s family, along with a new scholarship in Payne’s name, which will cover team and uniform costs for one Tormenta FC academy player each year.
Although Payne has never played for the club, Phoenix Rising added his support on Monday, quote-tweet the donation link.
“We are devastated by the loss of Carter Payne and send our condolences to Carter’s family and his football families at (Tormenta FC, Sporting Arizona, Michigan Football and Barcelona Residency Academy),” Rising wrote. “If you can, please donate to the Carter Payne Fund below.”
The USL also released a statement encouraging its clubs to honor Payne.
“The USL mourns the passing of Tormenta FC 2 defenseman David Carter Payne, who tragically lost his life in a traffic accident on July 9 in Statesboro, Georgia,” the league wrote. “Our hearts go out to Payne’s family and the entire Tormenta FC community – teammates, coaches, staff and fans. The USL invites all League Two clubs to honor David Carter Payne ahead of their next game.
The University of Michigan also posted a tweet:
Theo Mackie covers Arizona high school sports and Phoenix Rising FC. He can be reached by email at [email protected] and on Twitter @theo_mackie.