ST. LOUIS PARK, Minn. - There were a lot more parents than usual dropping their children off at Peter Hobart Elementary School in St. Louis Park Thursday, many sending their young ones through the front door with hugs, kisses, and more than a few tears.
It will be a difficult day as students and staff come to grips with the loss of two students, one confirmed dead and the other still missing after they were buried in a gravel slide while on a field trip at Lilydale Park in St. Paul Wednesday afternoon.
The victims were part of a group that consisted of two 4th grade classrooms from Peter Hobart. Two other students were injured in the mishap but will recover.
Students and their parents were greeted by a makeshift memorial of cards and signs, flowers and stuffed animals expressing sympathy for the impacted students and their families.
Inside the building, counselors and an army of comfort dogs will be on hand to help distraught children and their teachers cope with the raw emotions connected to such a sudden and unexpected loss. Small groups of students and their teachers could be seen walking out of the school and to the memorial to leave handwritten notes to their fallen classmates.
A district spokesperson told KARE 11's Lindsey Seavert that there will be a press conference at 2 or 2:30 p.m. with district officials to discuss Wednesday's tragedy.