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WCHS principal reads letter written by senior killed in car crash

Published: Jun. 13, 2021 at 11:09 AM EDT|Updated: Jun. 13, 2021 at 11:12 AM EDT
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SYLVESTER, Ga. (WALB) -A southwest Georgia principal is opening up and reading a letter a student wrote just weeks before she died in a car crash.

Worth County High School senior Rose Jolly, 19, died almost a week ago in a car crash in Tifton.

Rose Jolly
Rose Jolly(source: WALB)

On Friday, Worth County High School Principal Melissa Edwards said Rose was just that, Jolly, full of life and had a bright future ahead of her as she wrapped up high school credits early and was gearing up for college.

Edwards said, at one point in time, she wasn’t sure if Rose even liked her or not but Rose wanted to make it clear that Principal Edwards meant a lot to her.

She told Principal Edwards exactly how she felt through a letter given to Edwards roughly two weeks before the crash.

The letter read: “Dear Mrs. Edwards, I just wanted to write you a letter to tell you how much I appreciate you for helping me through school. Thanks for telling me that I can do it without a doubt and look at me now I did it. I can finally see the light and walk out into the real world. I’m going to miss you, times were hard but we got through it together. I’m gonna miss your beautiful smile you’re so loving and caring, you’re the best. Love, Rose Jolly.”

Letter (Back)
Letter (Back)(source: WALB)

Rose’s love will live long after the ink dries.

Edwards said the letter came as a surprise to her and she read it again immediately after hearing about the crash and has read it many more times since. She said it was common for Rose to write letters to other faculty members but this was the first time she gave one to her but after the crash, the letter had a whole new meaning to the principal.

“I hung it on my wall after it happened just so that I could see it more often. So that I could look at it and try to see did I miss something the first time around, was there something in here that she was trying to tell me that I didn’t get. And you know, I don’t think there was any kind of hidden meaning in there. I think this was Rose just being Rose and showing that she cared and showing thanks and gratitude and love but yeah I’ve looked at it a lot.”

Principal Edwards told us she plans to frame the letter.

Visitation and funeral services were held Friday afternoon in Sylvester.

Graduation was Saturday at Milt Miller Field at Worth County Stadium, and school leaders said there was a chair with a white slipcover on it in honor of Rose.

It’s the same chair that she would have sat in during graduation.

A wreath of yellow roses will also be at the ceremony along with a moment of silence in observance as they read her name during the graduation.

Edwards said she’s doing the best she can to stay calm and collective as graduation practice and Rose’s funeral services were held all on Friday, and naturally, she was at both.

Worth County High School Principal Melissa Edwards
Worth County High School Principal Melissa Edwards(source: WALB)

“As the leader in the building, I want people to know that I feel it but I can’t fall apart either so I’m very tightly wound right now. But yes, I get emotional when I read the letter.”

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