Friday afternoon, an eighth grader from Petticoat Junction Middle School died after skiing into a tree while on a school ski trip. He was appropriately supervised, was wearing a helmet, and was skiing within the boundaries of his skill set.
It was just a tragic accident.
And my heart is so broken for his family and friends. I'm also devastated for the school faculty and adult chaperones who were on the trip. Hugh chaperoned the Cub's ski trips just a couple of years ago and it created a fabulous memory for him and the Cub; I cannot imagine what those poor parents are going through, there they were, having a great experience with their kids and the kids' classmates and boom!
The school staff handled the accident gracefully and with the kids in mind; in fact, the majority of students weren't even aware that there had been an accident until they were back at the school, under the care of their parents.
I found out about it from the Cub, who came home from practice Friday night in a far more subdued manner than he usually enters our home. He told me that one of the Freshmen had been pulled out of practice and that the coaches had then been tasked with the grave responsibility of telling the boys about the accident that had befallen their teammates younger brother. Out of respect for the family, the coaches also made the decision to cancel the basketball games that were scheduled for the following day, and, the boys were sent home to be with their families.
I am so sad for those kids; I'm sad that yet another of our boys has been lost at such a tender age. I'm also proud of our little community and the way that it comes together to support those left behind.
I just wish I didn't keep getting so many opportunities to be proud of that particular thing.