Clear Creek school dealing with back to back tragedies

Wednesday, October 1, 2014
Back to back tragedies at Clear Creek school
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Students and faculty are dealing with the death of a student and an apartment fire

WEBSTER, TX (KTRK) -- The principal at Clear Creek ISD's McWhirter Elementary says this has been the most challenging week in his eight years at the school.

A second grader's sudden death started a week of back to back tragedy for students and staff at McWhirter Elementary.

"One of our second grade students wasn't feeling well," says Dr. Michael Marquez. "Mom did take him to the emergency room and he did pass away Thursday afternoon."

That student, who Dr. Marquez identifies as Aaron, and his twin brother had recently moved here from Honduras. He left school with a fever early last week, and within 48 hours, he died. Administrators were at the hospital when his family got the news.

Staff has raised money to give Aaron a proper burial in Honduras.

"The information that we have is that to have final arrangements in Honduras will be about $6,000. So so far we're $2300 in just a few days," said Dr. Marquez.

And Monday, a fire in an apartment complex across the street from the school displaced five families, including six students. It started in Heather Johnson's apartment.

"The whole apartment is damaged. We're trying to salvage some stuff," Johnson says. "But everything is burned, ruined, or smoke damaged, or chemical damaged or water damaged from the fire department."

School administrators were on the scene within an hour, and have made good on promises to help.

"They've gotten clothes, and shoes, and food. it means a lot to my heart because they've been really good to us," Johnson says.

Principal Marquez tells us rallying behind their own is what they do at McWhirter because they're one big family, and family comes first.

"The important thing is that we are a community and we can lean on each other," he says. "So when something like this happens, we've got to make sure we take care of our family."

McWhirter works closely with a non-profit called Communities in Schools to coordinate help for these families.

To find out how you can help the school help these families, call 281-284-4800.

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