Counselors on hand to help students cope with loss of friend - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Counselors on hand to help students cope with loss of friend

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Close friends and family of 13-year-old Alexis Pagan now face the harsh reality, she's no longer here after the car she was riding in careened off Bryan Circle and hit a utility pole Friday night.

"It takes awhile to get over," cries friend, Sierra Baker.
"She was a great kid, it's just tragic," says Lake Forest Middle School Assistant Principal Terry Walsh.

Two other teens were also in the car. They, along with Pagan, attend school at Lake Forest Middle in Cleveland. Extra staff members were on hand Monday to help students talk, cry, and begin to heal.

"They wanted school to be as normal as possible. If they need counselors we had extra counselors here from other schools along with the four that we have at our school," says Walsh.

The emotional pain proved to be too much for some. "A couple of incidences where students came up to the office, we've had a couple check out and go home," Walsh says.

Close friends of the family wanted to know for sure the driver of the car, Shawn David Toll, 38, was not under the influence at the time of the crash. The Bradley County Sheriff's Office says that does not appear to be the case.

As loved ones search for answers those who knew Pagan best try to move forward.

"We're a family here, we're just sorry," says Walsh.

Investigators tell Channel 3 its possible charges could follow as the investigation continues.

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