BETHEL — Telstar Regional High School counselors who have spent the week helping students in Dixfield cope with the loss of a classmate were called back to offer support for their own students Wednesday.
Jordan Cole, 18, of Greenwood was a 2011 graduate of the Bethel school. Cole died Tuesday night of injuries suffered in a car accident on Greenwood Road in Greenwood, Oxford County Cpl. Brian Landis said.
Two students at Telstar, Taylor Maddock, 16, and Holden Bean, 16, were involved in the accident, as was Cole's girlfriend, Katelyn Sumner, 19, a 2011 graduate of Telstar. All three were released from the hospital, Telstar Principal Dan Hart said Wednesday.
Jordan Cole was remembered by Hart as an active student.
"He was a master at vocational classes and he had a very busy class schedule," Hart said. "He earned more credits than were required to graduate. Matter of fact, he blew that part of his school record out of the water."
Vocational Region 9 Director Brenda Gammon said Cole attended that school in Mexico and took the truck driving course his senior year. Cole earned both his Class A and Class B licenses.
"What I've heard from all the students, from freshmen all the way to seniors, was that Cole was an amazing kid," Gammon said. "Cole was willing to help anyone with anything. He was just a friendly and caring person."
Telstar high school had counselors available Wednesday, and a room was set aside for students who wanted to take time away from class, Hart said.
Gammon said the same support was provided to her students.
"It's pretty heart-wrenching to see kids struggling with these accidents," Gammon said. "We are just trying to be there for them. To let them cry, laugh and just share their emotions."
On Wednesday night, the school held a candlelight vigil for Cole. Well over 100 students, staff, friends and family were in attendance. The group shared memories of Cole and then moved outside to hold candles in the rain.
Amanda Brooks, a friend and classmate of Cole, helped organize the event. She remembered her friend as someone who could be counted on.
"He was just a heartfelt kid," Brooks said as she fought back tears. "He never had a bad thing to say about anyone and he was always there for you when you needed him."
Tim O'Connor, the industrial arts and technology education teacher at Telstar, said Cole spent many hours in his classroom.
"He was always volunteering to help out," he said. "He was just a fun-loving, quiet kid."
O'Connor was in awe thinking that only five months previous he was standing in the same spot celebrating Cole's and his classmates' graduation.
"This is the last thing as a coach, teacher and parent that you want to see happen," he said. "One of your kids not being able to grow up and reach their dreams."