Vigil for Train Derailment Victims Held Tuesday Night
The high school attracted hundreds.
About 250 people attended an impromptu vigil at Mount Hebron High School in Ellicott City Tuesday night in the wake of the loss of two teen alums who died in a train derailment incident early that morning in downtown Ellicott City.
Elizabeth Conway Nass and Rose Mayr, both 19, of Ellicott City, died in the 12:02 a.m. incident in which the train passed behind them on the Main Street bridge, cars tipped over and buried them in coal, according to police.
Police said investigators located the bodies of teens “seated on the edge of a bridge over Main Street.”
The train that derailed did so after after passing a few feet behind the two young women who were sitting on the edge of a bridge over Main Street, police said.
The women were longtime friends from Ellicott City who graduated together from Mount Hebron High School in 2010.
People began arriving at the vigil at about 8:45 p.m. Tuesday in the high school parking lot, according to school officials; it was not a school-sponsored event.
Current and former students, along with parents and neighbors, came with candles and gathered quietly in a circle. Some cried, others hugged, a few people stood alone, apart from the crowd.
People left mementos in the center of the circle to remember the young women.
Brittany Swec , 21, attended with her parents Carol and Mark Swec.
Swec, who graduated from Mt. Hebron in 2009, kept saying: “Oh my god, oh my god, oh my god,” Carol Swec said of her daughter’s reaction when she heard of the teenagers’ death.
Brittany said she knew both girls, but was closest with Mayr, whose parents briefly attended the vigil, she said.
Brittany said she was “completely shocked” when she heard the news this morning.