Woodland High School students plan vigil to honor classmate - KPTV - FOX 12

Woodland High School students plan vigil to honor classmate killed in crash

Posted: Updated: Nov 26, 2012 06:12 PM
WOODLAND, WA (KPTV) -

Woodland High School students and staff are mourning publicly and privately, following the death of a 17-year-old student.

Samantha Effingham was killed in a car crash on SR 502 Friday afternoon. According to Washington State Police, Effingham was a passenger in a car driven by Ryan Matison, 20, when Matison drove through a stop sign at NE 29th Avenue and was hit by a pickup truck.

Friendly and outgoing, Effingham was well-known among students and staff members, according to principal John Shoup.

Effingham was a "Running Start" student, meaning she took college courses for high school credit this year. She visited the high school, where friends and her twin brother attended, often.

"She was nice to so many kids," said Shoup.

He added, "She had her own little personality, too. I'd be dishonored if I didn't say this about Samantha. And I love Samantha, but she didn't always follow the rules. She was OK with that. If she got called on it, she was okay with that too. She was how he was. Great young lady."

"I know she was always the first person to say 'hi' when you'd see her," said Robert Wilson, a senior at the high school.

Members of the Woodland High School Associated Student Body decorated the school's hallways with yellow ribbon, in Effingham's favorite color, and blue stars, a nod to her favorite song, Tim McGraw's When the Stars Go Blue.

Students wrote messages to Effingham on a board hanging near the school office and in a school courtyard, using chalk.

Safe rooms were also set up at the school Monday for people to grieve in private or meet with counselors.

Students are also planning a candlelight vigil for Effingham Tuesday at 7 p.m.

An account to help her family with funeral expenses was set up at Fibre Community Credit Union under the name "Sam Effingham."

State police say charges are pending against the driver, Matison, who lives in Battle Ground. Investigators said drugs and alcohol were not factors in the crash. Effingham was wearing her seatbelt.

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