Friends Remember Fallen A&M Cadet

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COLLEGE STATION, Texas His life was cut short in a tragic accident, but friends of the 20-year-old Texas A&M Corps of Cadets member said they'll never forget the impact he made.

Caleb Tate was riding his motorcycle along Texas Avenue when, investigators said, a car pulled out in front of his bike at the intersection of Southwest Parkway. Tate slammed into the car and eventually died from his injuries in the hospital a day later.

Friends of Tate said he was more than a friend, and more than an average cadet. Friends said Tate wanted to dedicate his life to helping others and was a true hero in the making.

Robert Scoggins, Rachel Zissmos and Jonathan Akin all met Caleb his freshman year.

"I remember the last thing I said to Caleb was to have a nice day," said Scoggins. "I wish I could go back and say more, knowing that was the last time I'd ever be able to talk to him."

Scoggins was Tate's roommate. He said no matter what, Tate always took time to care for his friends.

"Every time I came home to my room, he always asked me how my day was," said Scoggins. "He was always a great friend. He would take walks with me because he could tell that I was stressed about things."

Zissmos was a sophomore at A&M when Tate was a freshman. Before they were friends, Zissmos was Tate's cadet trainer. She said Tate was one of the shining stars of the freshman class.

"Something that's really valued in the corps is intensity. And Caleb had that. He had energy," said Zissmos.

During his junior year, Tate served as training sergeant for Company P-2, and had plans to go into the Navy after graduation.

"His goal for that wasn't to have a high status," said Akin. "His goal was to help people. That is 100 percent what he wanted to do."

Lieutenant Matthew Tennis is a Naval Science instructor with A&M. He's worked with lots of cadets over the years, and said Caleb stood out as one of the best.

"He always thought to separate himself from the masses and strove for excellence in all that he was doing," said Tennis. "So I was very proud of him."

In a statement, Texas A&M Corps Brigadier General Joe Ramirez, Junior said all who knew Caleb remember him as a sociable, confident young man who had a resilient work ethic and a good sense of humor. He was a very well-liked young man, and his loss will affect all of us for a long time to come.

So far, no word on funeral arrangements.