Former school of Millom pals killed in crash plans tribute as headteacher says community is 'deeply shocked and saddened'
BOOKS of condolence will be opened at the former school of two teenagers who were killed in a road crash in Cumbria.
Millom School headteacher Matthew Savidge said the deaths of Skye Mitchell and Caitlin Huddleston, both aged 18 and from Millom, were "a tragedy that has left us deeply shocked and saddened".
Ms Mitchell was the driver and Ms Huddleston the front seat passenger in a Toyota Yaris which was in collision with a Ford Transit Connect van on the A595 near the village of Bootle on Friday night.
A third 18-year-old local woman who was a back seat passenger in the car remains in a critical condition after she was flown by air ambulance to Royal Preston Hospital.
In a statement, Mr Savidge said: "Our thoughts and sympathies are with the families and friends of Skye and Caitlin and also with the family of the young woman being treated in hospital, who we hope will recover.
"Millom is a close-knit community and we are coming together as a school to remember the girls.
"We have books of condolence in which staff and students will record their memories and thoughts about Skye and Caitlin and which we will pass onto the families.
"The local authority are supporting the school with counsellors who are available to talk to students and staff who feel that they need this support.
"This is a very difficult time for the school and the local community and it is at times such as this that the community needs to, and will, come together to support those affected.
"Millom School will do everything we can to help the community grieve for and, when ready, celebrate the lives of Skye and Caitlin."
Paying tribute to Ms Huddleston, Mr Savidge said: "Caitlin left the school two years ago.
"Staff have described her as a credit to her family and the school.
"She was engaging, courteous and graceful, softly spoken, yet quietly determined.
"She was blessed with a wonderful smile which was quick to emerge even during challenging times.
"A wonderful young woman and such a tragic loss."
Paying tribute to Ms Mitchell, he added: "Skye was a vibrant and exciting personality with such huge potential in the world of the media.
"She represented exactly what we would want our young adults to be, motivated, responsible, outward-looking and committed.
"As a young person she was warm, compassionate and full of an effervescent charm which drew others to her.
"She was a loyal and trusted friend to those around her, as well as thoughtful and kind, even to those who did not know her personally.
"She worked hard and knew her future was going to be exceptionally bright. We will miss her enormously."
Police are continuing to appeal for witnesses to the collision, which occurred at about 7.55pm between the green Toyota travelling from the Millom direction and the white van travelling in the opposite direction.
The 51-year-old local male driver of the van was flown by air ambulance to Aintree University Hospital in Liverpool, where his condition is said to be serious but stable.