CCSO reports the death of Fallon student
Lahontan Valley News
A 13-year-old Fallon girl died at her home late Thursday afternoon of an apparent gunshot wound, reports the Churchill County Sheriff’s Office.
According to Sheriff Ben Trotter, deputies discovered a firearm and some notes near the body of the Churchill County Middle School student. Trotter said an autopsy is pending.
Although Trotter has not released a name, multiple sources have identified the girl as Taylar Hutchings.
“I feel real bad for the family,” Trotter said.
Churchill County School District’s superintendent said staff and students are coping with the tragedy.
“We are deeply saddened by this tragic loss, our hearts go out to the family,” Dr. Sandra Sheldon said. “This is a hard loss for everyone and right now we’re coping with the loss and making sure our students and staff have the proper resources. We will continue our support through the weeks or as long as someone needs them.”
Churchill County Middle School Principal Scott Meihack he — as well as students and staff — is stunned by the sudden loss of one of their eighth-grade students. He said he learned of the loss last night and immediately started the process to implement the crisis tree.
“We had a staff meeting at 7 a.m. and went through the plans for the day,” Meihack said. “It’s important that all of us were on the same page and relayed the same information so when we notified our students of the loss they were not getting mixed answers.”
Meihack said extra staff was called in to add extra support for the students and teachers. He said counselors from other schools and grief counselors from Naval Air Station Fallon are in the CCMS library all day to offer counseling to anyone who needs it.
“We don’t want students to be alone at any point today so we have the extra teachers assisting students if they want to go to the library for counseling or need to go anywhere else in the school,” he said.
Students and staff were informed of the loss this morning, and an automated call was sent out at 9:30 a.m. to parents of CCMS students to inform them of the situation. Meihack said there have been several students that have gone home already.
Once school dismisses on Friday, Meihack said the staff will debrief information from the day to see how procedures went, what will be done next week and how they can improve the crisis tree for the future.
“Right now our staff is on high alert,” Meihack said. “We have teachers walking the hall and observing students to make sure they are handling thing ok and not struggling. If we see a student having a tough time we’ll take them to see the counselor and call their parents.
“We have had a few teachers that have taken the news hard, so we’re making sure they also get the counseling they need along with the students.”
An RIP Taylor Hutchings (with this spelling) page has been created on Facebook.
“She gave so much encouragement to you my youngest child and for this I will always be grateful,” wrote Bobbi Pursley. “She always told her what a good cheerleader she is and gave her self esteem a wonderful boost. My prayers are with every child and every family member who is feeling this loss. ”
Diane Blevins said the CCMS student rode her school bus.
“Yesterday I let her off at her front door instead of the bus stop,” Blevins wrote. “The past few times I saw her she looked different. A little more messy … She had always looked perfect to me. That was at almost 4 p.m. I wish I would have known was she was thinking … my condolences to her friends and family.”
Josh Nadeau offered a tribute to his friend:
“Taylor you will be missed dearly; we didn’t have much time to know each other but in the time we did you already were the best and my best to the parents of Taylor. R.I.P you will be missed see you in heaven.”
Another friend, Brittany Bonner, posted a message.
“Now that I can actually post something about my best friend I am,” she wrote. “I know what you were going through and I’m sorry. I just want you here for my birthday, but I know you are probably happy and that’s all I care about. You were such an amazing person and I love you … I just want you back with me. Heaven gained a beautiful angel and I miss you more than anything.”