As school attempts to deal with tragedy, funerals for three students are Saturday

Published 5:00 am Friday, August 25, 2000

Bogue Chitto students tried to begin the healing processThursday following automobile accidents that claimed three of theirclassmates.

“It’s tough, but we’re going to make it,” said Principal BobbyAllen.

Traci Sasser, 16; Zach Dunaway, 17, and Chuck Ingles, 15, diedfollowing high-speed accidents in which their vehicles left BogueChitto Road and crashed Wednesday night. Allen said there were some”extremely difficult” times at the school Thursday morning.

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“We’re doing a lot with the students and doing what needs to bedone for them,” Allen said.

A student body meeting was held during the first period Thursdayand was followed by smaller group sessions with pastors andministers from several area churches. Allen said the sessions wereto help students come to grips with the situation.

“We’re doing what we need to do to start the healing process,”Allen said.

Dunaway and Ingles were members of the football team, and Sasserwas a cheerleader.

With visitation for all three students set for tonight atBrookhaven Funeral home, the school’s first football game has beenmoved to Saturday at 8 p.m. Allen said St. Andrews’ coaches agreedto postpone the game.

“They’re willing to do whatever we need them to do,” Allensaid.

All three funerals are set for Saturday.

Services for Sasser are 10 a.m. at Arlington Baptist Church withburial in Sasser Cemetery.

Services for Dunaway are 2 p.m. at Arlington Baptist Church withburial in the church cemetery.

Services for Ingle are 4:30 p.m. at Arlington Baptist Churchwith burial in the church cemetery.

Allen said the accidents were a great tragedy, and the studentswill be greatly missed.

“They were super kids,” Allen said. “It’s going to leave a lossand some holes.”

Despite the tragedy, Allen remained hopeful the bad situationwill result in something positive.

“The Lord doesn’t give us more than we can handle,” Allen said.”Some good will come out of this. We’re just not sure whatyet.”

The school has been getting some attention lately for plans bystudents and others for them to “spontaneously” join hands and saythe Lord’s Prayer after the National Anthem at the start of thefootball game. The action is in response to a Supreme Court rulingbanning prayer over public address systems.

Although the prayer is not a school-sponsored event, Allenexpects the Lord’s Prayer will be said at the game Saturday, and hedoes not anticipate anything happening that would discourageit.