Pataula Charter dedicates park bench to girl killed in crash -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Pataula Charter dedicates park bench to girl killed in crash


Students and teachers at a south Georgia school dedicated a special spot to a little girl killed in a school bus crash two weeks ago.

Several other Pataula Charter Academy students were injured in that crash. Students say they're still dealing with the pain of losing a classmate.

4th graders dedicated a park bench on the playground of Pataula Charter Academy where 10-year-old Jordyn Doughtie was a student.

"We sit on the bench and talk about her cause she used to sit with Sonnia and Casidy. There's a bench out there, but it's broke. So we got a new one and we sit on it because she likes to sit on benches," said Alstyn Stapleton.

Jordyn was killed May 7 when a Pataula Charter Academy bus crashed on Highway 39 in Clay County. Several other students were injured, including two of her best friends. The three rose bushes are in honor of their friendship. Sonnia Wallace says all three girls were best friends.

"We would like fuss at each other, but we got back to friends and we just play and laugh on the playground," said Sonnia Wallace.

Their teacher Jeannie Bush says this is her most difficult challenge since becoming a teacher.

"When I was in college and they give you all these classes and all these things you need to know. I don't ever remember anyone talking about what you do if something like this happens or how it might feel. But it is a very painful thing. I know it's hard for the family, but it's hard for us also. We spend a lot of time with these children and you just can't go through that much time with a child and not care and not love them," said Jeannie Bush.

Jordyn dreamed of being a teacher like Bush. Sonnia says she is always thinking of Jordyn and remembers her as being funny and nice to everyone.

"Just pray for Jordyn. Keep praying for her and her family," said Sonnia Wallace.

At the end of the dedication, students released 300 balloons for every child on the bus on the tragic day.

Soon the bench in honor of Jordyn will have the quote "We will remember, we will remember always".

Fourth graders dug the holes themselves to plant the rose bushes and laid the rocks under the bench.

The bench with Jordyn's name on it should arrive by the end of the week.

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