The teenager who was struck and killed by a freight train Tuesday morning in Carlisle was remembered as “a very good kid who was well-liked and very respectful.”
Carlisle School Superintendent Larry Hook said he was notified by Carlisle police about noon Tuesday that the victim was Jamie Anderson, a 16-year-old sophomore at Carlisle High School.
Hook said prior to learning the identity of the victim, school counselors and teachers were informed of the situation and were asked to talk with their students.
He sent out the following statement to be read to students at the beginning of the seventh period by teachers and staff member:
“It is with sadness that I tell you about a loss to our school family. Today, Jamie Anderson, a sophomore at Carlisle High School has passed away after apparently being struck by a train sometime in the early morning hours. The incident appears to have been a tragic accident.
“I understand that many of you may have questions about Jamie’s death. I will try to answer any questions that I can. If you would like, we will take the remainder of this class period to talk about what has happened. At times like this, it is okay to have many different feelings, including sadness, anger, and disbelief. It is okay to cry. Together, we can talk about whatever you may be feeling or want to talk about. If I cannot answer your questions, or you would like to talk to someone privately, there is a support room now available which is the special education conference room, by Mr. (Tyler) Tincher’s office. Anyone who would like to go to talk to someone in the support rooms may do so now. I will give you a pass.”
Teachers were instructed to determine which students would like to leave for a support room and ask the remaining students if they have any questions or comments they would like to share. Teachers were asked to take time to answer and to talk as the students desire.
The instructions said if there was not a lengthy discussion that teachers consider quiet seat work rather than lesson plans as usual.
“We never make an announcement like this over the PA system, but rather in smaller classroom environments as the teachers and students more familiar with one another and will lean on each other as well,” Hook said.
He said grief counselors will be at the school for the rest of the week and into next week for “as long as it takes.”
“Our prayers are with her family,” Hook said. “It’s very sad.”
Hook said he knew Anderson and described her as “a very good kid who was well-liked and very respectful.”
He said Anderson had been a student at the elementary school, then left the district before returning last year. Hook said Anderson had been placed with that foster family in the past.
“It’s heartbreaking,” Hook said. “I am sure they’re grieving.”
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