Sandy High is working to provide additional counseling for students this week after news came over the weekend of senior Caleb Plasker's death. According to a GoFundMe account started by a friend of the family, the 18-year-old was suffering from mental health issues and took his own life.
"Angie, her husband Tim, and their two children Coleton and Ally are heartbroken and grieving," said friend Sarah Anderson on the fundraising site. "This was very unexpected and so extremely shocking. All I want to do is help them as they try to make it through this difficult time. The last thing they need now is to worry about money. There are many costs to consider including arrangements for his funeral and expenses since they're unable to work right now. Please can you all help and donate to this wonderful family."
The GoFundMe has a goal of $10,000 and has already raised $9,520 within the past 24 hours.
"Although we may never know why this occurred, we do know that mental health plays an important role in our lives," Sandy High Principal Sarah Dorn explained in a statement to students and parents on Monday, Jan. 10. "Mental health is treatable; it is important if you or your student are not feeling well in any way to reach out for help."
Dorn added that "members of our support team are available to meet with students individually and in groups today as well as over the coming days and weeks."
Students and parents are encouraged to call the school's main office or counseling office at 503-668-8011, ext. 7125 for assistance.
Sandy High School counselors can be contacted as follows (counselors listed by last initial of students they serve):
Mental health resources for the general public include:
"Please respect his family's privacy by being cautious of rumors; we want you to know that we will be sharing the most accurate information we can as it becomes available," Dorn said. "It is important to know that what occurred is no one's fault. Whether you were close to Caleb or not, learning about an unexpected loss is hard and it's okay to feel whatever emotions you might be feeling. Each of us will react to Caleb's death in our own way, and we need to be respectful of each other. I want you to know that we are here for you."
A communal vigil to celebrate Plasker's life will take place in Sandy's Centennial Plaza, 39345 Pioneer Blvd, at 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 14. For more information, contact Sarah Hartman at 503-360-6137.
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