LACONIA — Middle School students gathered at an assembly in the gym on Monday, their first day back in school since the tragic April 19 accident that took the life of 14-year-old classmate Lilyanna Johnson. They were joined by teachers, administrators and community leaders.
Superintendent Bob Champlain later reported that highlights of the gathering included the reading of letter from 8th grader Allyssa Miner, who is home recovering from injuries she suffered in the same accident — the two girls were walking on the Messer Street Bridge when they were struck from behind by a passing SUV.
Students were also treated to a pictorial show of Lily's life, set to music. Champlin said all city residents should have the opportunity to view and listen to the tribute and noted that a link to a video would soon be posted on the School District website. (laconiaschool.org.).
Mayor Michael Seymour proclaimed Monday "Purple & Blue Day" in the city in recognition of Lily's favorite colors. The two colors were prominently displayed all over the gym.
Assistant Principal Chris Ennis had the honor of reading Allyssa's letter to her fellow students.
Champlin also noted that Laconia Police and the Johnson family had moved the memorial students had been building to Lily on the bridge to a safer spot at the rear of the school.
"So tomorrow we'll have a more normal day than today at LMS," Champlin wrote to the greater school community on Monday. "All my experience and the research on crisis intervention in schools tells me we want to get back to our normal and healthy routine for all our young people. That said, I want to assure you that'well keep watching each student of offering any and all support as needed."