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This week’s edition!

St. Dominic Academy grieves

The St. Dom’s community was deeply saddened by the sudden loss of Saint Dominic Academy student Casey Cloutier (age 14) and his father, Ghislain (Gus) Cloutier (age 49), who died in a tragic car accident on Route 202 on the morning of Tuesday, December 30 while on their way to a Junior Varsity hockey tournament.

Although the ninth grader had just enrolled at the school in August, he was already well liked. In the aftermath of the tragedy, friends, teammates and the broader community came together to offer support in a variety of ways. A memory wall was established where friends, teachers, teammates, coaches and family members could post messages and memories, and over 120 students and staff attended Casey and Gus’s funeral in Winthrop on January 6. A memorial Mass was held at St. Dom’s on the following day.

“From the moment you walked through the doors last fall, you became part of the St. Dom’s Family,” said Principal Joline Girouard to the Cloutier Family after the school Mass. “And you always will be.”

Condolences and support also poured in from outside the St. Dom’s community. Several neighboring schools, including Lewiston, Edward Little, Cheverus, Dirigo and Messalonskee, as well as many local businesses, sent cards, donations and flower arrangements to the school. When the St. Dom’s JV Hockey Team opted not to play in the holiday tournament on the day of the accident, the other competing teams held a moment of silence before the championship game. Similarly, a moment of silence was held before the Varsity Team’s next game – against archrival Lewiston High School – on January 3. Players wore Casey’s number 14 on their helmets and girls cheering for Lewiston schools showed their support by wearing black and white ribbons in their hair.

Efforts to support the Cloutier Family included the creation of over 700 ribbons, led by St. Dom’s parent Jeanne Donovan, which were sold for $2 each at the game, with all proceeds going to the Cloutier Family. A page on Youcaring.com provided another opportunity to donate, and over $830 in contributions was collected at the memorial Mass at the school. Efforts by the ninth grade class to sell bracelets in Casey’s memory are currently underway, and donations in name of the Cloutier Family can be sent to Saint Dominic Academy, 121 Gracelawn Road, Auburn, Maine 04210.

“Tragic times like these bring out the best in people,” said St. Dom’s President Donald Fournier. “It warms my heart to know that, during this difficult time, our community is coming together and being supportive.”

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