Caldwell Students Grieve Loss of Classmate

By: Kristen Ross Email
By: Kristen Ross Email

Students and staff at Caldwell Intermediate School, are remembering the life of a young boy whose life ended all to soon.

Tragedy struck Monday afternoon as 10 year-old Robert Lenhart was killed during a tractor ride with his father, after the two hit a hole, and the boy was thrown from the tractor and hit by the tractor's shredder.

The hallways at Caldwell Intermediate were a little bit quieter Tuesday morning, as news spread of the horrific Memorial Day tragedy. Lenhart was a fourth grader at the school.

"We talked with the staff about common reactions the students might have with grief, and the different emotions that they could be feeling to try and help them with those situations," CIS Counselor Tracy Anderson said.

Counselors from all of the district's schools were pulled in to help grieving students.

Tracy Anderson had a box of tissues ready in her office. The tissues were there for students who came to her trying to understand about losing one of their friends.

"Some students are crying, others feel like they need to do something. A lot of students have written letters to the family," Anderson said.

Those letters could be seen all over the school. Tearful messages that read "I will always remember him," "I will miss you," and "He was a good friend."

"They're drawing pictures for the family, just trying to express themselves the best way they can," Anderson said.

The best way students can describe Robert is as a respectful, outstanding, bright, excellent, radiant, and truthful friend, whose now looking over them.

School officials say the letters and pictures drawn by Robert's classmates will be dropped off to the family Tuesday evening.

Robert's mother also works for the school district, and the staff has set out a generosity box at all of the schools and are accepting donations on the family's behalf. The generosity box is a newly initiated program the schools are doing to help families when tragedy strikes.

An awards banquet that was scheduled for Tuesday morning was cancelled to allow students and staff time to grieve.

School officials say Robert's classmates also experienced the loss of two of their friends in late 2005. That's when a set of twins were killed in an automobile accident in Burleson County.

Two trees have been planted at the school in their honor. A similar tribute to Robert could be considered.

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