Portage County Sheriff's deputies say speed, alcohol and lack of seatbelts were likely factors in an early morning crash on Sunday.
Investigators say 29-year-old Scott Dean was driving his truck on County Highway 66 in the town of Linwood. Authorities say Dean lost control of his truck, causing it to go off the road, striking a utility pole and flipping over.
19-year-old Joey Trzebiatowski, a student at UW-Stevens Point and 25-year old Nicholas Czech were also in the vehicle. Deputies say all three were pronounced dead at the scene.
As the news of the crash broke, friends and family say they are getting by remembering the good times.
"He knew exactly what to say when you were upset, very cheerful." As Ashley Pagel remembers her friend, Scott Dean, she can't help but smile.
"He was a really great guy, always brought a smile to your face," Pagel says.
And his smile, she says, was contagious.
"He just knew everything, so many people knew him, it's just so sad," Pagel explains.
Nearby, friends and family of Joey Trzebiatowski are also grieving the loss of their brother, son and friend.
"If you were having a bad day, you'd talk to Joey and he'd make it better," Nicole Guthu, Trzebiatowski's friend said.
Guthu says she will remember Trzebiatowski for many things, but one that sticks out the most, his love for hockey.
"They whole family played hockey," she recalls. "When they were out there it was really their time."
And she says no one can replace his sense of humor.
"When he walked into a room the energy level just went through the roof," she says.
And while the community grieves, one thing is for certain; no one will ever forget.