As students around the county were getting ready for fall break, some at Creekview High School instead were mourning the loss of their classmate.
A spokesperson for the Georgia State Patrol said Friday that Cheyenne Heard, 17, of Canton, was killed in a Sept. 13 crash.
Heard reportedly was killed at around 3:30 a.m. when her vehicle veered off Ga. 20 and struck a culvert, according to a spokesperson for the Georgia State Patrol.
Preliminary reports indicate that Heard, who was not wearing a seat belt, was ejected from her 2000 Chevy Silverado when it overturned.
The GSP continues to investigate exactly what caused Heard to veer off the road.
On Friday, Creekview Principal Adrian Thomason said the school has experienced “a great loss.”
In a letter sent home with students and via email last week, Thomason said the administration was “very saddened over the loss.”
“Cheyenne was an energetic student who was known as a friend to all. She came to class in a good mood with a smile on her face,” Thomason said. “Cheyenne was always willing to help out her classmates and loved riding horses and barrel racing.”
Friends of Heard remember the teen as a “wonderful, kindhearted soul.”
“She will always hold a special place in the hearts and minds of this senior class,” Thomason said.
An obituary for Heard described the young woman as a cowgirl who loved to ride horses. She enjoyed barrel racing and working with special needs children. Her senior project was called Tying up Cancer to Benefit Rodeo Kids with Cancer.
Heard, according to her obituary, also was a member of the Georgia High School Rodeo Team and was involved in the Hightower Baptist Church Vacation Bible Study group.
Barbara Jacoby, spokeswoman for the school district, said Creekview has extra counselors available to assist students.
“Although we have begun implementing strategies to help our students cope in this regard, we feel it is best to have parents or guardians discuss situations that can be devastating to a child, such as the concept of untimely death and what it entails,” Thomason said.
Funeral services were held on Sept. 15 at Ingram Funeral Home in Cumming. Interment followed at Hightower Baptist Church in Ball Ground.
Heard was preceded in death by her grandfather, Harold Heard. She is survived by her parents, Jason (Debra) Heard and Nichelle (Tim) Stewart; brothers, Justin and Jeb Stewart; sister, Shelby Pritchett; grandparents, Rick and Beth Farr, Jerry and Geraldine Stewart, Gary Spence and Brenda Heard; niece, Madison Stewart; several aunts, uncles and cousins; and other loved ones and friends.
Ingram Funeral Home & Crematory, in Cumming, was in charge of arrangements.