Local high school hosts vigil, fundraiser planned to honor teens killed in car crash

Students and staff at Terre Haute South Vigo High School came together Saturday evening to honor two teens killed in a car accident earlier this week. Now, a fundraiser is being planned to help with funeral expenses.

Posted: Jul 6, 2019 11:33 PM

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - Students and staff at a Wabash Valley high school are coming together to honor and reflect on the two young lives lost in a car crash.

You'll remember teens Mason Kiger and Robert Clouse died early Wednesday morning in a car crash.

They were both students at Terre Haute South Vigo High School.

Saturday night the school hosted a vigil to honor the boys.

Robert Clouse and Mason Kiger were both members of ROTC.

Students and staff gathered to reflect and grieve together.

Staff at the high school said it was important to provide a safe space for everyone to share stories and lean on each other.

"Our students come from all different backgrounds, and we just want them to have a place where they're used to being. Somewhere where they're with their friends and can just say what they needed to say and feel safe doing that, so it was really important for us to provide that opportunity for our students," said Michelle Tracy, Guidance Director at South Vigo.

Guidance counselors will be available for students next week as they continue to process this loss.

Plans are also in the works to support one of these families dealing with the tragic loss of their son.

Close family friends have stepped up to help the Clouse family in their time of need.

The family is having a difficult time finding the money to pay for a proper funeral, so a family friend is leading efforts to raise money.

The community is invited to a spaghetti dinner fundraiser next week benefiting the Clouse family.

Those who knew Robert said he will be missed.

"We love him, and there are a lot of people hurting, and this is not something anyone ever plans for, so I just wanted to do whatever I could to take the weight off that they didn't have to bare and make it easer for them. Give him the proper final, you know, resting place and send off that he deserves," said Vandi Clinkenbeard, event organizer.

The fundraiser starts at noon Sunday.

It's happening at the Riley American Legion.

You can come out and enjoy a good meal, live music and a silent auction.

Another fundraiser is planned for July 20th at Imperial Lanes in Terre Haute.

That's happening at 7 p.m.

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