Students return to school after crash kills senior weeks from graduation

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SAN DIEGO-- Crisis counselors were made available at Mission Hills High School in San Marcos after a student was killed steps from the school Saturday.

"I feel like it will be as if everything's different and it'll be just quiet and no one's gonna want to say anything because it'll be as if reality sets in that she's really gone and she shouldn't be," said student Lauren Caldera, friend of the victim.

Friends and classmates identified the victim as senior Lauren Wolford, who was expected to graduate June 14. She was walking near the school around 11 a.m. Saturday when a sedan whose driver apparently lost control jumped a sidewalk, striking her on the north sidewalk of East Mission Road, sheriff's officials said. She died at the scene.

Multiple media outlets reported the driver of the black BMW sedan involved in the crash was a sophomore or junior baseball player at the high school. Sheriff's officials said he was not seriously injured in the crash, which left the front end of the car smashed into a wall.

School Principal Courtney Goode sent a recorded phone message to parents Saturday afternoon confirming that a student had died in a traffic accident, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported. He informed them that crisis counselors would be available to students and staff on Monday.

San Marcos Unified School District Superintendent Melissa Hunt said in a statement that district officials were making arrangements "to support our Grizzly families in the wake of this tragedy." Hunt said counselors, social workers and psychologists from inside and outside the district would be at the school as long as the need persisted.

"This is a terrible loss and our hearts go out to our student's family in what we know must be unimaginable grief," Hunt said in her statement.

Speaking to local media, Hunt said "There are no words. We just weep with the family."

A memorial for Wolford sprouted up near the campus over the weekend, with mourners dropping off candles, flowers, stuffed animals, photographs and hand-written notes. Tributes also poured in on social media.

The deadly accident was still under investigation Monday, and deputies asked anyone with information on the crash to call the Sheriff's Department's San Marcos substation at (760) 510-5295.


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