Chandler High students remember classmate who died - WSMV News 4

Chandler High students remember classmate who died

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CHANDLER, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

Chandler High School students gathered for a vigil Friday night in honor of a 16-year-old classmate who died suddenly.

At least 200 people lit candles for Arianna Katrice Holden, a junior, who died early Friday morning. Holden's father said she died in her sleep, but did not specify a cause.

Holden was a member of Chandler High's volleyball team, and was remembered for her spry sense of humor and for having "a heart bigger than her body."

"She was such a precious gift," said Holden's cousin, Phelan Moore. "I could be stressed out, and that would be the one person besides my daughter who would come over and tell me she loved me and everything would be OK."

Students took turns sharing stories about Katrice, as her friends called her. One recalled how she occasionally tormented the faint of heart with her pet bearded dragon named "Zeno."

"It was amazing to see this," said her father, Rodney Holden, of the large crowd. "That my daughter had so much love, and so much to give. It's something that's so heartfelt."  

All Chandler High School athletic events were canceled Friday to allow students time to grieve and attend the vigil, Chandler High School principal Larry Rother said.

“It’s been a sad day at Chandler High,” Rother said. “She was a great kid, very popular. Very well-liked by students and faculty alike.”

The school made grief counselors available throughout the day, he said.

The 7 p.m. varsity boys and girls basketball games against Corona del Sol were canceled, along with junior varsity soccer matchups against Perry High School.

Copyright 2016 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


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