Dale Hirrel, 16, of Greenwood Lake, died in a car crash over the weekend in Tuxedo.
BY ERIKA NORTON
TUXEDO — Four school districts are mourning the loss of Greenwood Lake teen Dale Hirrel, who died in a car crash in Tuxedo in the early hours of Saturday morning.
Dale Hirrel, 16, and his friend Jacob Corti, 16, were travelling home from the junior prom at Warwick Valley High School Friday night when their vehicle went off the road, striking a utility pole and an earth embankment on Long Meadow Road in the Town of Tuxedo.
The driver of the vehicle, Corti, also of Greenwood Lake, was flown to Westchester Medical Center, according to state police, with injuries to his legs. The lone passenger, Hirrel, was pronounced dead at the scene. The cause of the accident is still under investigation.
Both students had attended George F. Baker High School in Tuxedo their freshman year and then transferred to Chester Academy for their sophomore year in 2015. Hirrel transferred to Warwick Valley High School earlier this year.
Each superintendent from the four school districts offered their condolences, and each district is offering grief counseling to students.
“While Dale transferred to Warwick Valley High School just a few months ago, his warm smile and kind heart made a quick impression and touched the lives of all who knew him," said Warwick Valley School Superintendent Dr. David Leach
Patrick Higgins, math teacher at Chester Academy and former teacher at George F. Baker High School, wrote this on his Facebook page:
“While Dale never was a student in my class I knew him well. We had some incredible handshakes that we would always work to improve and change. The young man went out of his way to stop in my room and brighten my day. From a ‘Yo Higgins’ to some sort of crazy greeting he was a constant means of making my day brighter.”
Funeral arrangements for Dale Hirrel will be held at 10 a.m. on Friday, May 6, at Holy Rosary Church in Greenwood Lake.
Greenwood Lake Superintendent Christine Ackerman said the district is deciding whether field trips this week that will conflict with Dale’s services can be rescheduled.
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