Four Windward High School students were struck by a vehicle while out walking on the sidewalk with their P.E. class. Two of the boys died and two are injured and facing difficult paths to recovery. Dozens of students witnessed the tragedy first-hand and thousands more have friends and family in that group.
This created a widespread sense of hurt in our community. Students realized the loss of two of their own while suffering along with the survivors. Parents realized how easily it could have been one of their own children and find themselves suffering along with the victims’ parents.
There are simply no words to soothe the pain of this loss. Ferndale is hurting and we mourn together, as a community.
Ferndale Mayor Gary Jensen
But nearly as quickly as the tragedy struck so did the positive response from the Ferndale community. The School District quickly organized late transportation for the Windward students and notified parents of those changes and the reasons for them. They also worked with the counselors who were providing assistance at Windward for those in need.
The community later filled the Good News Fellowship Church on Axton Road for a school district event to support one another and make use of counselors and support animals in attendance. Shortly after a student-organized candlelight vigil was held on the Windward campus (see photo).
This morning, the day after the tragedy, local parent groups are gathering food supplies for staff, students, counselors and families going through crisis counseling at Windward.
There will be emergency accounts set up for the victims’ families to help support them financially. Discover Ferndale will share information about how to donate to those when available.
A candlelight vigil has been planned for Saturday evening.