Dajae Coleman was on the mind of many Monday at Evanston Township High School.
Much of the school day was spent honoring the 14-year-old freshman, who died Saturday night after being shot.
Principal Oscar Hawthorne said the school honored his memory Monday during school hours by reading an essay Dajae recently wrote in his humanities class.
Hawthorne said the essay conveyed in Dajae's own words, "the excellent character of this wonderful human being."
A brief statement about Dajae also was read over the school’s PA system, and was followed by a moment of silence, Hawthorne said.
“Today we are grieving the loss of a student, a friend, and member of the ETHS family, Dajae Coleman. Based on everything I have learned about this incredible young man, ‘Dae Dae’ as he was called by friends, was the kind of person who knew what he wanted out of life and understood that the path to success involves plenty of hard work and dedication in the classroom and beyond,” Hawthorne said.
To help the school community deal with the sudden and tragic loss of Dajae, grief counselors were available to both students and staff Monday. School officials still are determining how long they will continue to provide the counselors.
Because so many are moved by the sudden and senseless loss of Dajae, the school set up a memorial fund where both the ETHS community and the Evanston area community at large can contribute.
The fund will help Coleman's family defray funeral expenses and support his family during this difficult time.
Donations can be made in several ways:
- In person (general public): Check, cash or money order donations may be dropped off in the Safety Office at Door #1 (Main entrance off Dodge Avenue, front of the building) during the hours of 8:00am-4:00pm, Monday-Friday when school is in session. Please note that ETHS is closed on Wednesday, September 26, 2012.
- In person (ETHS students and staff): ETHS students and staff may drop off cash, check or money order donations to the Main Office during the hours of 8:00am-4:00pm, Monday-Friday when school is in session.
- By mail: Check or money order payments may be mailed to:
Evanston Township High School
ATTN: Dajae Coleman Memorial Fund
1600 Dodge Avenue
Evanston, IL 60201
All checks or money orders should be made out to "ETHS District 202." Please write "Dajae Coleman" on the memo line of your check or money order.
- Online: Secure online payments can be made through the ETHS website using a credit or debit card. Click here to donate.
All donations to this memorial fund are tax deductible to the extent allowed by law. All proceeds of this fund will be given to the Dajae Coleman family. Donations will be accepted through October 31, 2012.
For more information, contact the ETHS District 202 Business Office at 847-424-7100.