CLARK, NJ – Students at Arthur L. Johnson High School are mourning a classmate who died Monday evening. 

“I am writing to you with great sadness that one of our ALJ seniors passed away this evening. Our deepest sympathies go out to her family and friends,” school Superintendent Ed Grande wrote in a letter to parents Monday night.

The 17-year-old girl’s name is being held until all next of kin have been notified, according to police.  Town officials have confirmed the cause of death was suicide.  

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According to Grande’s letter, school counselors and support personnel from Union County’s Traumatic Loss Coalition for Youth Program will be on site assisting those affected by this death.  

Data from the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention indicates suicide is the second leading cause of death in the United States among those between the ages of 10 and 34.  It is the third leading cause of death in the same age group in New Jersey according to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

There are many suicide prevention and information resources. Locally Caring Contact in Westfield provides confidential 24/7 call-in at 908-232-2880 or text ‘heart’ to 741741 for the text crisis hotline.  For more general inquiries call the main office for assistance at 908-301-1899.

NJ Hopeline offers confidential help at 1-855-NJ-HOPELINE (654-6735). They also offer a web-based chat resource, and text messaging at njhopeline@ubhc.rutgers.edu.

The National Suicide hotline is 1-800-273-8255.  Their website offers information about risk factors and how to respond.

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