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Community Rallies to Support Family After Accidental Death of Middle Schooler

The Germantown community was rocked last week as word spread of the death of a rising eighth grader at Roberto Clemente Middle School. The school community has raised more than $11,000 to help his family cover costs associated with his passing.

Many parents heard about the death of Parker Hudson, a well-liked student at Roberto Clemente, when they read an email from Clemente Middle School Principal Jeffery Brown. “With a heavy heart, I am writing to inform you of the death of one our students. On Monday, August 1, a rising grade 8 student, Parker Hudson, passed away,” wrote Brown. “He is remembered for the positive imprint he left on those who met him.”

Parker, who was a member of the magnet program at Roberto Clemente, died at his home in Gaithersburg on Monday, Aug. 1.

Montgomery County Police investigated that death of Parker Hudson and determined it to have been an accident. “Detectives investigated it as a death investigation, and it was officially ruled an accidental death,” said Montgomery County Police spokesman Rick Goodale. “It was not a suicide. There is no foul play suspected. He unintentionally put himself in a position that he could not get out of. It was a tragic accident.”

The letter sent to the middle school community included a link to a GoFundMe.com account set up by Melissa Regan, who is a member of the RCMS Parent, Teacher, & Student Association.

The GoFundMe.com account has raised more than $12,000 since it was created on Thursday, August 4. The stated goal of the fund is $15,000 to help the Hudson family pay for service and funeral expenses. “In this time of need, let's remove the financial stress of associated costs,” wrote Regan on the GoFundMe.com page.

“This was completely accidental and unexpected which is a nightmare for a family to go through,” said Melissa Regan. “It is excruciating for any family to lose a child for any reason. This could happen to any family, and many families do not have $15,000 for funeral expenses in a savings account. Then you start thinking; I guess I could put this on credit cards. You are grieving the loss of a child and have to start to think about details like paying for something like this. If we, as a community, can help alleviate some of that burden and not have to think about what credit card or bank loan to take out to pay for this. If all of us together can help with that piece of the situation, we are more than happy to help do so.”

Photo from GoFundMe.com