Hamilton reacts to teen death - ABC FOX Montana Local News, Weather, Sports KTMF | KWYB

Hamilton reacts to teen death

Posted: Updated:
HAMILTON -

One Hamilton High School student is dead and another student is hospitalized after an alleged prescription drug overdose.

Hamilton Police Chief, Ryan Oster, said that the two minors were found Sunday morning after a call came in about a person not breathing.

Oster said that there is an ongoing investigation that they are looking into how these two minors got possession of these drugs.

Faculty at Hamilton High School share how they will be moving forward from this tragedy.

Both the school and community are mourning over the awful tragedy that happened this past weekend.

But the principal said that the school is really coming together during this tough time.

He said that they brought in additional counselors from other schools in the Bitterroot to help out.

Hamilton High School Principal, Dan Kimzey, said that social media is causing kids throughout the Valley to make speculations about the incident and status of the two students involved.

Principal Kimzey said that rumors have circulated as a result of this.

"Our job is to try and support kids and it became a little bit more difficult because of the potential for bad information to be so widespread," said Principal Kimzey.

Principal Kimzey said that the counselors developed a plan to meet the needs of all students.

School Counselor, Ellen Ryter, said that they are offering both individual and group counseling.

"We're here just to provide support to the students and the staff and families as well if they are needing more support. We are also a resource for referring out to outside resources too depending on the needs," said Ryter.

Principal Kimzey said that it is also necessary to raise awareness about the dangers of drug abuse.

"We certainly worry about the hazards of prescription drugs has suddenly become elevated and that’s a good thing. So we will be looking to do training not just with kids but with the community because it is a community problem," said Principal Kimzey.

He said that the school has reached out to law enforcement, the Juvenile Probation Department, and others to help educate the community.

Principal Kimzey said that they plan to develop a training program for all ages to help ensure safety in the community.

"Our hope is that it elevates that discussion and we're here to help families in having that discussion."

According to the national institutes of health, after marijuana and alcohol, prescription drugs are the most commonly misused substances by Americans ages 14 and older.

And a national survey on drug use and health data on youth and young adults, found more than 5,700 youth in 2014 reported using prescription pain relievers without a doctor's guidance for the first time.

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