Mark Thorne, a grieving father, has confirmed the identity of his 16-year-old daughter, Alyssa Thorne, as one of the Fayette County teenage girls who died tragically Tuesday due to a suspected drug overdose near school .
Authorities and families involved have not released the identity of the second girl who died and the third student who is currently in critical condition.
According to Fayette County Schools, the two individuals are 17 years old.
While an official cause of death has yet to be determined pending an autopsy, the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office said the deaths are believed to be the result of a drug overdose.
According to Thorne, he believes his daughter died from cocaine that had been mixed with fentanyl.
Thorne mentioned that he was residing away from his daughter who was living with a foster family and that they had a FaceTime conversation around 5 a.m. Tuesday morning.
At around 4:40 p.m. Tuesday, the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office discovered the Fayette Ware High School students, just hours before the graduation ceremony.
To aid in the investigation, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation provides assistance to the sheriff’s office.
According to Chief Deputy Ray Garcia, Fayette County has already seen 42 overdoses in 2023, four of which resulted in death.
The cause of the recent increase in these cases remains unknown. In a news release Wednesday, Fayette County Schools confirmed the students involved were high school juniors.
The school will provide bereavement counselors to support students and staff during this difficult time.
In addition, a balloon release vigil is scheduled in the back parking lot of the school at 5:00 p.m. Thursday.
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