Perry Township community holds vigil after recent student deaths

MASSILLON, STARK COUNTY, Ohio - A vigil was held to honor and remember a number of Perry Township students, past a present, who have recently lost their lives to suicide.

The vigil was at Hartwick Park.

Earlier this month, a student at Edison Middle School died and three students in the district took their own lives in the fall. School officials said six current or former students have committed suicide this school year. They have all occurred outside of school hours.

Although some parents and Perry students have suggested that bullying played a role in some of the suicides, Perry Township police maintain they have not found any evidence of that.

Perry Local Schools has implemented support programs, including adding two guidance counselors at the high school and using anti-bullying programs. The district also hosted three community meetings and group meetings with students.

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 1-800-273-TALK.