Superintendent: Well-Liked Senior Left A Written Statement; Community Stunned

HUNTINGTON STATION, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A high school student jumped out of a window Thursday morning, leaving fellow students and school officials stunned.

The unidentified senior was conscious when he was airlifted to Stony Brook University Hospital, South Huntington School District Superintendent David P. Bennardo said.

He is listed in critical but stable condition, CBS 2’s John Slattery reported.

The incident happened around 9:15 a.m. at Walt Whitman High School in Huntington Station.

“I don’t know how this happened at all,” junior Chris Corbin told CBS 2’s Jessica Schneider. “A couple people were crying, upset, concerned.”

School officials said the well-liked student was in a third-floor classroom of the science wing and appeared to have jumped through a window. The superintendent said it happened as classes were changing.

“It was during that transition period between classes, where you have three or four minutes where everybody moves from room to room. There were a half dozen to a dozen students, rough number, moving in and moving out.  There were teachers moving in and moving out,” Bennardo said. “As a school community and as a South Huntington community, we’re just praying for the family right now and praying for the youngster.”

“He just jumped and the whole school was in lockdown,” senior Joseph Godfrey said.

The student left a written statement, CBS 2’s Slattery reported.

“I would characterize it as it certainly could be self-inflicted. We do have word he left a note, and police are handling that note,” Bennardo said.

Students  said they could not understand why such a revered student would try to harm himself.

“Very nice kid, very jolly kid. Very tragic,” senior Jake DeLorenzo said.

“I knew he was like a happy kid, good kid, really surprised  everything happened,” senior Pat Farrell added.

“Actually he looked happy all the time to tell you the truth,” Corbin said. “All this time he looked happy.”

Parents shared in the students’ disbelief.

“It’s very sad that somebody has to resort to that without having somebody to talk to or —  it’s just sad,” parent Tricia Bird said.

“I think it’s very sad. I hope he gets help,” parent Tina Brown added.

People at the school told CBS 2’s Schneider that the student’s parents were by his side Thursday night at Stony Brook University Hospital.

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