The second day back at Winters Mill High School in Westminster during the new year brought the pain of loss and grief from the first, after news spread of the death of 17-year old Makenzee George.
"This is the worst news that a community... First of all, the parents... our hearts go out to the parents,” said Assistant Superintendent of Instruction Steve Johnson with the Carroll County Schools. “When you're in education and you're dealing with students, it's so hard when you lose a student. It really is."
Investigators say the tragedy unfolded on Sullivan Road---an unforgiving two-lane road which ribbons through the countryside with treacherous curves.
"Upon arrival, they found a 2008 Chevrolet Cobalt driven by a 17-year old female had failed to negotiate a right hand turn in the roadway, crossed the center line and collided with a 2014 commercial delivery vehicle," said Cpl. Jon Light of the Carroll County Sheriff’s Office.
The impact with the larger Freightliner truck sent both vehicles through a fence and into a nearby field.
Police said Makenzee was wearing her seatbelt, but she would not survive the force of the collision.
Paramedics transported her to Carroll Hospital Center, but their efforts would be in vain.
On this day, the district would send crisis teams to her school to provide counseling for those now struggling with Makenzee's death.
"Whenever we have a loss like this, certainly we try to provide for our students who would be grieving as well as staff members... teachers to may be grieving,” Johnson said. “and we also try to reach out to the family to let them know that we're grieving with you and we're part of your family as well."
A senior at Winters Mill, in addition to playing on the Falcons softball team, Makenzee attended the Career and Technology Center's Academy of Health Professions where she was gaining real experience dealing with patients in hopes of someday becoming a nurse.