Griggsville-Perry High to Hold Vigil Tonight After 17-Year-Old Student Killed in Crash

By Jeremy Coumbes on October 12, 2023 at 3:28pm

An area high school is mourning the loss of one of its own today.

In an update this afternoon, Griggsville-Perry School District Superintendent, Jeff Abell confirmed that one of the students involved in the single-vehicle crash has passed away.

According to a preliminary report by Illinois State Police Troop 6 officials this morning, officers responded to the scene of a single-vehicle crash on Illinois Route 107 just south of Perry, Illinois at approximately 8:30 this morning.

Preliminary report information indicates that the vehicle with two occupants had struck a tree. Pike County Sheriff and Coroner David Greenwood announced late this afternoon that 17-year-old Zachary D. Thomas of Griggsville was pronounced deceased at the scene.

The other occupant was airlifted to a regional hospital. According to the update by Abell this afternoon, the second student is currently being treated in the hospital for non-life-threatening injuries.

Abell says in the update that the district is committed to doing everything it can to help its students through the grieving and healing process. The district has activated its crisis counseling team to be at their schools through this week and into next week.

A candlelight vigil has been planned for tonight at the high school. Abell says everyone is invited to the south side of the school near the flag pole at 6:30 p.m. for prayer and a candlelight vigil.

The school will then be open for anyone who would like to visit or meet with a counselor. The school will be is session on Friday with counseling available. Abell says all academics will be paused while the district spends time supporting each other.