School Coping with the Death of Beloved Principal

Tags: Currents, Brooklyn, NY, Catholic Education, Faith, Queens, NY

By Emily Drooby

The halls of Saint Joseph High School, quieter than usual, as students, like Armani Meza, adjust to a life without their beloved principal.

Meza explained, “She meant so much to me and my school I don’t know if it’ll ever be the same without her.”

The school has been doing their best to help those grieving. Guidance department head counselor, Mary Christy, explains it started when they broke the news of principal Latham’s death. Christy said, “We gave them the opportunity to go where in the building they needed to go. Did they need to talk to somebody, did they need to go to the chapel, did they need to be with each other?”

Extra help to deal with the profound loss continued throughout the week. Meza explained, “You can step out of the classroom whenever you want, there’s so many people you can speak too.”

Councilors have been available to students and staff and there were organized prayers on Wednesday at Saint Boniface Church.

During the prayer service, students wrote their favorite memories with principal Latham on these hearts, which are now hanging in the school lobby.

Rose Tomassi, a religion teacher, said, “There’s a sort of joy that comes from remembering someone who is really an incredible person and sharing those memories.”

Another way to remember principal Latham is by visiting her office, which has been left open, something students and staff have been taking advantage of.

Students and staff will also have the chance to say their final goodbyes, the school is busing people to the Friday morning mass of Christian burial, at least 170 people plan on going.