Larry Duane Parris: Victim in Deadly Crash Involving ‘American Idol’ Star Identified

Larry Duane Parris

Facebook/BroncosMexicanRestaurant Larry Duane Parris

Larry Duane Parris has been identified as the 54-year-old man killed in a car crash involving ‘American Idol’ alum Caleb Kennedy, according to WSPA.

WSPA reported that Kennedy has been charged with driving under the influence after crashing his vehicle into a workshop in the back of a residential home at 12:33 p.m. on February 8, 2022, in Spartanburg County, South Carolina. Parris was outside his workshop at the time of the crash when he was struck as Kennedy drove into the building, officials said. Parris was taken to Spartanburg Medical Center where he later died from his injuries. He is survived by his wife and daughter. The 17-year-old Kennedy is being held in jail on the felony DUI resulting in death charge, records show.

Friends & Family Mourned the Loss of Parris on Facebook, Saying ‘We Can’t Express How Much We Appreciated His Smile’

On Facebook, Parris’ friends and family members have mourned his loss.

On February 8, 2022, the Bronco Mexican Restaurant in Spartanburg, South Carolina, wrote on Facebook, “This evening, we are reaching out to Larry Parris’ family. We can’t express how much we appreciated his smile and great attitude every time he visited. Even though his life was cut short, he made an impact on all of us here. May he rest in peace! #pacolet #loveyourcommunity❤️”

A number of people replied to the post, writing “sending prayers” and “Prayers for my friend and his family in this tragic time.”

On February 9, 2022, Kayla Michelle Cash-Varner wrote on Facebook, “Prayers for all my brother’s family. Especially Larry Parris’s wife and daughter. Also for the Kennedy family. It seems that people do not take drinking or being under the influence of drugs serious. Remember your taking someone else’s life, hurting their family, and yours. This doesn’t matter if you have had one beer, one pill, or one joint. You drive and hurt or kill someone there is consequences. Hopefully this will give some people a wake up call.”

A third user focused in on Kennedy’s involvement in Parris’ death, and wrote on social media, “Caleb choices have consequences you mad a bad one May GOD use this to grow you into the person he meant you to be praying for you and your family.”

Caleb Kennedy Removed Himself From American Idol in 2021

Kennedy was a finalist on the most recent season of “American Idol.” He made it to the top five before leaving the show after a video surfaced that featured him alongside someone in what looked like a Ku Klux Klan hood.

At the time, the then-16-year-old announced his departure from “Idol” on his social media account. He wrote:

Hey y’all, this is gonna be a bit of a surprise, but I am no longer gonna be on American Idol. There was a video that surfaced on the internet and it displayed actions that were not meant to be taken in that way. I was younger and did not think about the actions, but that’s not an excuse. I wanna say sorry to all my fans and everyone who I have let down. I’ll be taking a little time off social media to better myself, but saying that, I know this has hurt and disappointed a lot of people and made people lose respect for me. I’m so sorry! I pray that I can one day regain your trust in who I am and have you respect. Thank you for supporting me.

In a statement to the Herald Journal, Kennedy’s mother, Anita Guy, shared, “I hate this has happened and how Caleb is being portrayed by people online,” Guy said. “This video was taken after Caleb had watched the movie ‘The Strangers: Prey at Night’ and they were imitating those characters. It had nothing to do with the Ku Klux Klan, but I know that’s how it looks. Caleb doesn’t have a racist bone in his body. He loves everyone and has friends of all races.”

She added that her son was 12 at the time the video was taken.

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