Third Lake Forest High School Student Killed By Train
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Updated 03/26/12 – 6:10 p.m.
LAKE FOREST, Ill. (CBS) — The Lake Forest community was reeling Monday, after three Lake Forest High School students were killed by Metra trains in the past three months, all apparent suicides.
The most recent happened Sunday morning, when 18-year-old Edward Schutt was killed on the Metra tracks along the 700 block of South Sheridan Road.
As WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya reports, the body of Edward Schutt, 18, was found early Sunday just south of Old Elm Road. Police were notified just after 7 a.m. Sunday, the Sun-Times Media Wire reported.
“I guessed it was another suicide,” said Richard Hodgdon – a recent high school grad who saw police responding to the scene.
LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya reports
Before Schutt’s death, two other teens were killed by Metra trains in Lake Forest. Only one has been officially ruled a suicide, authorities said all three appear to be suicides.
CBS 2’s Brad Edwards reports on efforts to end the trend.
Farid Hussain, 15, was hit and killed by a Union Pacific North Line train on the morning of Jan. 9 at Deer Path Road, just north of the Lake Forest station. His death was later ruled a suicide.
On Feb. 28, William Laskero-Teskoski was killed by a Metra train in the 1400 block of North Western Avenue in Lake Forest. No official ruling has yet been made on whether the death was a suicide or accident.
Schutt’s close friend Michael Lown said, “I can’t imagine. … I spent a lot of last night thinking, just trying to comprehend that last split second.”
Although police would not discuss certain details of the case due to the victims’ age, authorities said evidence at the scene of each death made it appear each of them intentionally stepped in front of a moving train.
“We haven’t found anything to link the three together,” said Lake Forest Deputy Police Chief Glenn Burmeister. “We’re bringing in an outside professional to assess the situation.”
Schutt was the son of Lake Forest College president Stephen Schutt, was a senior at Lake Forest High School, where he made the honor roll as a junior.
Hussain and Laskero-Teskowski were also Lake Forest High students.
“I don’t know what it is that needs to change but something does,” Lown said. “I don’t think people understand what effect they have on one another. That’s a lot of the driving force behind this.”
In a note to students, Lake Forest High School Principal Jay Hoffman said, “It is with indescribable sorrow that I am writing once again to inform you of the loss of one of our students. “
In the note, Hoffman described Schutt as talented and bright.
The school is on spring break. Security officers asked reporters to leave when they arrived Monday. However, before this last incident, the community formed a task force offering counseling and more in the light of the deaths.
It’s a taboo topic, forced upon Lake Forest three times in three months, all along the Metra line. Counselors will be on hand at Lake Forest High School when students return from spring break.