Peninsula News

High school students mourning death of classmate

Tuesday, November 27, 2012
Jefferson and Alameda De Las Pulgas signs Leyla Beban

A Peninsula high school is in mourning after a young student was killed in a traffic accident on her way to class. 14-year-old Leyla Beban was riding her bike when she was hit and killed Monday.

Tuesday was definitely not a normal day at Woodside High School, but the principal said she believes school was where the students belonged, mourning together as a group. The students were greeted Tuesday with an announcement over the intercom that grief counselors would be on campus to help them after their classmate's death. "Teachers will follow up with classroom-led discussions on not only Leyla, but how you deal with grief," Principal Diane Burbank said.

A memorial, where Leyla was hit, continues to grow. People who live in Redwood City say passing by the intersection of Alameda De Las Pulgas and Jefferson Tuesday morning was heartbreaking. "Heart wrenching. I have a grandchild, a grandson, that's the same age," Tami Barbara told ABC7 News. She said her grandson went to the same preschool as Leyla.

Barbara is one of several people who have sought comfort on a Facebook page dedicated to Leyla. "Everybody's writing about little things that they remember. One little girl said last night, 'We have to remember to give each other a hug and be grateful that we have each other while we're here,'" she said.

Police were at the scene of the accident Tuesday morning continuing their investigation. Leyla was hit by a truck while riding her bike to school. Police say that at this point, it doesn't look like she or the driver were at fault, and that it was just a terrible accident.

As Leyla's classmates try to deal with the tragedy, many of them and her principal as well, are wearing blue because it was Leyla's favorite color. "It makes your hear feel good for the community that they're gathering together and I think having an appropriate response, but also reminds us how fragile life is and how Leyla will be missed," Burbank said. She added that some of the students even painted their fingernails blue.

Police say conditions were very foggy at the time of the accident and that her tires may have slipped because of the moisture on the ground. They just can't say why the accident happened but are trying to figure it out.

(Copyright ©2014 KGO-TV. All Rights Reserved.)

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Tags:
san mateo county, redwood city, woodside, peninsula news, amy hollyfield
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