When news surfaced that 11-year-old Riya Rajkumar was found dead at a residence in Ontario, Canada, hours after an Amber Alert was issued regarding her disappearance, the principal of her school sent a letter of condolence and advice to parents in the community.
As CrimeOnline previously reported, her father, 41-year-old Roopesh Rajkumar, was arrested on suspicion of murder and was transported to an area trauma center to be treated for an apparently self-inflicted gunshot wound.
According to the Daily Hive, Meadowvale Village Public School Principal Stacy Service expressed “great sadness” in relating the news.
“This tragedy has brought tremendous sadness to the students and staff at Meadowvale Village Public School,” she wrote. “Members of the Peel District School Board’s Critical Incident Response Team have been at the school today to provide support to Riya’s friends and classmates, as well as other students and staff.”
Service noted that counselors will be on hand as long as they are needed.
She went on to describe the fifth grader as “a well-liked student” whose death is “deeply felt by everyone at the school.”
The letter went on to provide tips for parents dealing with kids who are grieving or otherwise upset by the loss.
“Be available to your child,” one point advised. “If you don’t know the right thing to say, just listen and validate. Acknowledge that we don’t always have answers to why these things happen.”
Her letter ended with a statement about the community’s grief and efforts to remember the young girl.
“Our hearts go out to Riya’s friends and loved ones,” Service wrote, adding that flags on campus will be flown at half mast during a period of mourning.
“We have set up a memorial table in the foyer where the school community can go to write messages and condolence,” she concluded.
[Feature Photo: Riya and Roopesh Rajkumar/Facebook]