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Eunice High students mourn loss in murder-suicide tragedy

Renee Allen - Eunice High School Principal, Mitchell Fontenot says students at the school are doing much better.  According to the State Fire Marshal's Office, Eunice High student Julia Watford, 16 and her sister Jayia, 9 were found dead just after midnight Sunday.

 

Principal Fontenot says Eunice High this week celebrates Homecoming Week but it's difficult. "They try to get into the spirit and then all of a sudden I think they think about it and then it gets them down again," says Fontenot.

 

According to officials, firefighters responded to a deadly house fire on South Fourth Street in Eunice.  State Fire Marshal Butch Browning says 39-year-old Carla Watford shot and killed her two daughters before setting fire to the home. Authorities says Watford then shot and killed herself.

 

Tuesday, outside the home a memorial of stuffed animals, flowers and balloons gather.  At Eunice High, the same tokens of grief are on display. "Her locker is decorated with a simple white ribbon that reads Forever a Bobcat," explains Fontenot.  The same message can be found on the school's marquee.

 

"On Monday, we had our two counselors of Eunice High. Plus, we got about seven from the district. They stationed themselves in the library. The students went on their own if they wanted to talk," notes Fontenot.

 

Fontenot adds the school will host a balloon release on Wednesday at 7:00 p.m. at the Northwest Community Center. Fontenot says he realizes everyone grieves differently. "We are just there for them in case they need us.  Just a pat on the shoulder or a little smile here and there. I think that goes a long way."

 

On Monday, a Powder Puff Football game was held. Fontenot says teammates painted "JW" on their cheeks. Fontenot calculates the students raised about $700 to be donated to the family.

 

According to the obituary, a Celebration of Life will be celebrated at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, October 3 at Ardoin's Funeral Home Chapel in Eunice. Inurnment will follow in the Mt. Calvary Cemetery.


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