1. News

Grandson of Tampa's prominent Poe family killed by car after Rays game

Jay Wolf, 24, a graduate from Plant High in 2009, is the fourth member of the family to die recently.
Published Aug. 15, 2014

Jay Wolf, a budding musician and a grandson of Tampa's prominent Poe family, was hit and killed by a car Tuesday night in Arlington, Texas, after attending the Tampa Bay Rays-Texas Rangers game.

Wolf, 24, was the grandson of former Tampa City Council member and Hillsborough County Commissioner Haven Poe and her husband, retired businessman Charles Poe. The Poes both died earlier this year at age 82 and 85 respectively, along with Charles Poe's brother, former Tampa Mayor William F. Poe Sr., 82.

Wolf, who graduated from Plant High School in 2009, is the fourth recent death the family has had to endure.

"It's been rough," said Jennifer Poe Wolf, 53, Jay's mother and the daughter of Haven and Charles Poe. "I'm not coping very well. When it's your parent, it's hard, but when it's your child, it's devastating."

Wolf moved to Austin, Texas, last year to pursue a career as a musician, his mother said. On Tuesday, he made the three-hour drive by himself to attend the Rays game at Globe Life Park. An avid Rays fan, he wanted to see at least one game this season, his mother said.

"Couldn't be more excited to see my Rays play the Rangers tomorrow night," he wrote on his Facebook page before the game. "Gonna be a great first trip to the Ballpark at Arlington." He later posted a picture from his seat behind home plate. He sent the same photo in a text message to his mother. She told him to have fun and be careful.

Just after midnight, Wolf headed back to his hotel. He was walking on Interstate 30, north of the ball field, when a westbound car ran into him, according to Arlington police. He was pronounced dead at the scene. The car's driver was cooperating with police. Investigators were still trying to determine why Wolf was walking on the main lanes of the freeway, police said.

Rays manager Joe Maddon spoke of the tragedy Wednesday, offering sympathy to Wolf's family.

"We just want to send out our sincere condolences," Maddon said. "My goodness, it has to be awful being a parent or a grandparent. It's just a really tough day. So our thoughts and prayers go back to the people in Tampa, to the Wolf family. It's an awful moment. I wanted to acknowledge that today."

Friends and others who knew Mr. Wolf also posted remembrances on social media.

"Our deepest condolences to the Wolf family," read a message from Plant High School's Twitter account. "Jay … was an awesome young man whose personality was infectious."

In the years since he left Plant High, Mr. Wolf had pursued his passion for music, fashioning a career as a singer and guitarist. In 2013, he earned a degree in audio production from Middle Tennessee State University. He moved to Austin soon after, joining the city's flourishing local music scene and hoping to make it big. He worked delivering pizzas and tended bar at the Horseshoe Lounge to make a living while strumming Americana rock songs during live gigs at Austin venues.

"He loved Austin," his mother said. "It was a great fit for him. He was very happy there."

Along with his mother, Mr. Wolf is survived by his father, Boyd Wolf, 56, and sister, Brendle, 26. The family was starting to plan funeral arrangements Thursday morning, though the time and location had not been set.

Contact Dan Sullivan at or (813) 226-3386. Follow @TimesDan.


  1. Joshua Michael Nichols, 21, was arrested by Pasco County Sheriff's deputies on Saturday in connection to the early morning shooting death of an unidentified man during an argument outside a Spring Hill home. [Pasco County Sheriff's Office] ANASTASIA DAWSON  |  Pasco County Sheriff's Office
    One person is in custody. The Pasco County Sheriff’s Office is investigating.
  2. 5 hours ago• Pasco
    Dr. Rao Musunuru, MD, received his third “Paul Harris Award.” the highest recognition from the Rotary Club, on Aug. 15. The pin was presented to Dr. Musunuru, a nationally-recognized cardiologist, by Rotary 6950 District Governor Allen Collins in recognition of his humanitarian and philanthropic services to the people of Pasco County and the State of Florida for nearly 40 years. Pictured: Dr. Rao Musunuru, MD, (left) and Rotary 6950 District Governor Allen Collins. Jemith Rosa/Hudson Rotary Club
    News and notes about your neighbors
  3. A Lancaster County Sheriff's deputy walks around the Old Skool Sports Bar and Grill, the scene of a shooting early in the morning, north of Lancaster, S.C. on Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019.  Lancaster County Sherriff's Office said in a statement that the agency was investigating a fatal shooting that also injured several people.  (Jessica Holdman/The Post And Courier via AP) JESSICA HOLDMAN  |  AP
    Two adult males were shot and killed.
  4. Swedish environmental activist Greta Thunberg, right, listens to U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, left, during the Youth Climate Summit at United Nations headquarters, Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019.  (AP Photo/Eduardo Munoz Alvarez) EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ  |  AP
    Swedish 16-year-old activist Greta Thunberg started the climate strike movement with her lone protest in front of her country’s parliament.
  5. Stay with for the latest news and updates. Times
    She was not in a crosswalk when she was hit, troopers say.
  6. Vice President Mike Pence reacts during an immigration and naturalization ceremony in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on the White House grounds, Tuesday, Sept. 17, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon) ALEX BRANDON  |  AP
    Katie Waldman, a former University of Florida student senator, was accused of helping discard independent student newspapers with a front-page endorsement of a rival party’s candidate. | Analysis
  7. Check for the latest breaking news and updates. JAMAL THALJI  |  Tampa Bay Times
    John Clark used a shotgun to kill his mother and another man. Then he returned to the crime scene with a shotgun, according to the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office.
  8. Sandra Gero, a regional search associate at Ray and Associates, hosts a meeting at the Middleton High School auditorium and gathers public comments on what people are looking for for the next Hillsborough County School Superintendent on Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019 in Tampa. LUIS SANTANA  |  Times
    Using public meetings and a survey, they’re painting a picture of the ideal school leader.
  9. The main exhibit center at the Museum of Science & Industry in Tampa once stirred the imagination with dinosaurs and stars. Now, it's empty, but on the verge of rebirth as a movie studio.
    The County Commission has set aside $2 million for the project as the Film Commission studies the demand for it.
  10. President Donald Trump speaks during a news conference with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison in the East Room of the White House, Friday, Sept. 20, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky) PATRICK SEMANSKY  |  AP
    Hunter Biden worked for a Ukrainian gas company.