McKINNEY (CBSDFW.COM) – People in McKinney and across North Texas are mourning the loss of a father and popular coach, who died after a tree fell on his car during a powerful storm.

The freak accident happened in Collin County as severe weather moved through the area Thursday evening.

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Friends tell CBS 11 News that Anthony Rex – known to his friends as Tony – had just dropped his 7th grade son off at baseball practice and was leaving when people in the parking lot heard a loud crash.

Anthony Rex (Family Photo)

The 53-year-old was driving his red Corvette out of the parking lot at Zinger Bat Ballpark when a large tree broke in half and fell on his car. The ballpark is home to the Frozen Ropes Baseball and Softball Training Center, which runs camps during the spring and summer for kids.

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Witnesses say when other parents heard the crash they quickly moved to keep kids away, many of whom were just getting dropped off for baseball practice, until investigators and emergency response teams arrived.

Rex’s death has rattled many in the community. His friends say he was about to get married, was very well liked, and worked hard to support and inspire young people.

“I’m still in shock… it hadn’t really set in yet. I just had to drive over here this morning and… try to understand it,” said friend Glenn Stephenson.

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Police are still investigating the accident.