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Published September 03, 2013, 09:48 PM

First day of school hits hard for Hawley

Hawley, MN (WDAY TV) - Back to school meant a painful reminder for Hawley students; as not everyone was able to show up for the first day of class.

By: WDAY Staff Reports, WDAY

Hawley, MN (WDAY TV) - Back to school meant a painful reminder for Hawley students; as not everyone was able to show up for the first day of class.

Counselors say there's been a lot of tears and a definite void. That's because over the summer, Hawley was hit with tragedy after tragedy; some students injured in accidents, others killed, and the school says they're equipped to deal with this one step at a time.

You wouldn't think in such a short period of time, so many bad things could happen to such a good-hearted town.

But it's never been so evident as on the first day of school, where time feels like it's standing still.

Laurie Boeshans- Hawley School Counselor: "You want to welcome kids back and be positive and happy."

Because in just three months, one teen was severely hurt in an accident, a 19-year-old killed in a rollover and another incident including 15-year-old Rylie Efterfield who would have been a sophomore at Hawley High if it weren't for the fire which ripped through her home.

Mike Martin- Hawley High Principal: "There's definitely a void. There's a piece missing."

Just in the first few classes. Mr. Michael Martin, the school's principal has been speaking in class, assuring students staff will be doing whatever they can to help with the loss.

Martin: "There's still a lot of processing going on. And ya know? This is a thing that's going to linger for a long time."

Boeshans: "Anything like this is going to be so hard for kids. They're just kind of coming into their own learning who they are, but then to do with such a thing that shakes you to the core is a really tough thing any time of the year."

Counselors say there have been positive notes. Students have really come together in a positive way. Tomorrow, classmates plan on wearing their Remember Rylie t-shirts to honor their friend.

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