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Two students in the Buena Vista School District, a fifth grader and an 8th grader, have died, district superintendent Lisa Yates said Thursday.

The fifth grade student, Michael Werner, died in a house fire overnight on Thursday.

Yates said that the family of Rosalyne Cope, who finished 8th grade this year, told her Wednesday that Cope had died.

Tomorrow, June 12 at 9 a.m., preschool and elementary students will be welcomed at the Avery-Parsons Elementary School playground area and middle and high school students may meet on the practice fields behind the Middle and High school building to come together and grieve, Yates said.

"Families are welcome to be with their children. Counselors and staff will be available to sit with students and write notes to the families of these loved ones," Yates said.

The district will be working with its mental health partner, Sol Vista, to support students and families who may be struggling, she said.

"The tragic and sudden loss of life is immensely difficult to hold as adults and even more so for our children," she said. "If you or your student would like the support of Sol Vista, please call 719-539-6502. If it is crisis, and immediate assistance is needed, please call Colorado Crisiis at 844-493-8255."

Yates said that the district will remain in touch with families regarding how to further support the families of Werner and Cope.

"Our BV community is strong in its collective care for one another. At this time, we offer our deepest sympathy to these families with time to grieve privately and will stand ready for the long-term care and love they will need," Yates said.

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