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'A loss like no other' | Woodbridge High School mourns death of beloved football coach and teacher

Fred Moore was a math teacher and football coach at Woodbridge Senior High School who made an impact on many students.

WOODBRIDGE, Va. — Condolences and donations continued to come in on Saturday for Woodbridge Senior High School football coach Fred Moore, who died suddenly after collapsing during the team's game on Friday, according to school officials. 

Moore was just 33-years-old but quickly left a mark on students as the defensive coordinator for the team and as a math teacher at the school.

"When I met Coach Moore, I probably spent 10 minutes with him and offered him the defensive coordinator job," Head Coach Jimmy Longerbeam said. "Some guys have the 'it factor' with kids and he had that.”

Many community members posted to social media on Saturday and remembered Moore for his big smile and constant positive attitude. The school also helped organize a special message board over the weekend where students and staff could leave comments and memories, which often focused on the impact Moore had on them.

"Mr. Moore was one of those teachers who always put his students first," one user wrote. "We worked together last year and this year. His number one thing was to always make sure his students felt loved and supported here at school.  He was loved by so many on and off the football field."

"He had an energy that made you want to talk to him," another person wrote. "Most know him as a coach but he'll be remembered as a great man."

Moore's death came the same night that stands were packed to cheer on the Vikings. Longerbeam told WUSA9 that Moore collapsed shortly after the start of the third quarter and after the opposing team called a timeout.

"We went out and met with the kids," Longerbeam said. "When we were walking off, I had gotten to the sideline. I turned around and saw him laying on the ground. It was out of the blue.” 

Pictures posted to the Woodbridge Senior High School Facebook page showed the team praying for Moore after he collapsed. The school reported that Moore was taken to the hospital where he later died.

As of Saturday, his cause of death remained unknown. 

"It’s going to be a challenge because he was so close to our students," Principal Heather Abney. "Parents loved him. Our staff loved him."

By Saturday night, a GoFundMe page organized by Coach Longerbeam's wife for Moore's funeral expenses had raised almost $15,000 in just eight hours. Longerbeam said the donations and support showed the love for Moore and the impact he had on others. 

"I’m not surprised by the outpouring," the coach said. "I knew how everybody felt about him.”

Abney told WUSA 9 that grief counselors will be available for students at the school on Monday. Moving forward, she said the high school would likely organize a tribute for Moore at an upcoming football game.

"It was a life well-lived," she said. "His wife said he passed away doing what he loved.”

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