One Tree Hill star Bevin Prince lost her husband, William Friend, on Sunday after he was fatally struck by lightning.
According to local news coverage, William “Will” was hit near Masonboro Island, North Carolina, at around 3:15 p.m. Will, the CEO of digital media company Bisnow, was only 33 years old.
Will was pronounced dead after CPR and resuscitation attempt
Deputies from The New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office and the Wilmington Police Department’s Marine Unit responded and performed CPR on Will before a 20-minute attempt to resuscitate him. He was pronounced dead shortly after and taken to a local hospital by EMS.
A spokesperson said it was unclear whether or not Will was on the island or inside the boat when he was fatally struck.
Bevin, the North Carolina native who played the quirky, blonde cheerleader of the same name on the hit CW show One Tree Hill, married Will in 2016. The two moved their lives from New York City to North Carolina a few months into the coronavirus pandemic to be closer to family.
The actress has received an outpouring amount of support during the difficult time, especially from friends and fellow One Tree Hill castmates. Sophia Bush, who played head cheerleader Brooke on the show, shared a heartwarming photo of the couple with her condolences.
“Heartbroken and at a loss… Our family is grieving for one of our own. Please life up @bevinprince in whatever way you are able. Show her the love she deserves; the love her husband always showed her,” Sophia wrote.
Bevin and Will’s joint North Carolina cycling studio Recess
After making the move down south, Bevin and Will started their own business in Wilmington – a new cycling studio named Recess by Bevin Prince. As a former SoulCycle master instructor, Bevin continued her love of the inspiring and effective workout by growing her own business alongside her husband.
On Monday, Recess’ Instagram account shared a photo of Bevin and Will at the company’s outside spin studio to commemorate Will’s impact on the business.
“We greatly appreciate the outpouring of love and support we’ve received from our Recess community. Will’s knowledge, guidance, and support is the foundation that Recess is built on,” Recess wrote.
“Recess is the business that Will and his wife Bevin had been building and growing in their new North Carolina home,” the post continued. “There was nothing Will respected or valued more than the American Dream, entrepreneurship, and women in business. We know he wanted to see this business continue to great success and lead to the employment of many more people.”
The post links back to the “Will Friend Memorial Fund,” a GoFundMe page created to raise money for Will’s favorite causes – Recess and the Special Operators Transition Foundation.
The fundraiser has already raised over $43k from friends, fans, and supporters of the actress and her husband.