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November 2021 Message from the Dean's Office

Hailee York
Hailee York, courtesy of Hailee's funeral program

We recently informed you of the passing of one of our McKay School students, Hailee York. She and her friend and fellow BYU student, Ashlyn Hanzon, were killed in a tragic car accident on the evening of October 15. Our hearts mourn with friends, family, professors, classmates, and others associated with these two students and survivors of the collision.

We have witnessed an outpouring of love and compassion to Hailee’s family by many in the MSE. Thanks to each of you for being willing to mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort” (Mosiah 18:9) at this difficult time. Vicky Macias, one of Hailee’s friends and classmates, provides this tribute:

"Many within the McKay School of Education did not know Hailee. She was often quiet when first meeting, but that would never last for long. Hailee was a friend to everyone she met. She had an incredible ability to sympathize with others and was always willing to listen when you needed to talk. Hailee never wanted anyone to feel alone. I enjoyed getting to know Hailee beyond school because she was in my ward for two years. I always admired her adventurous and competitive spirit; Hailee was never one to back down from a challenge. She loved to go on spontaneous adventures as long as she could be with her friends or family. Hailee also had a fantastic sense of humor. She made every class better. Hailee’s questions were always super helpful and clarified a lot of confusing concepts. Hailee was a hard worker when it came to classes, but she never put classwork in front of the needs of others. Hailee was an incredibly selfless person and was willing to drop anything for her friends. She would have been an outstanding special educator, and I am saddened knowing the world has lost someone as remarkable as Hailee York. She will be greatly missed but never forgotten."

At Hailee’s funeral, this quote by Elder Dale Renlund was shared: “The Savior loves to restore what you cannot restore; He loves to heal wounds you cannot heal; He loves to fix what has been irreparably broken; He compensates for any unfairness inflicted on you; and He loves to permanently mend even shattered hearts.”

I have a firm testimony of the power of the Savior to heal our broken hearts and to restore life. I also know God sends angels on earth to provide support and resources to help us make it through each day. Thanks to our CAPS colleagues for sharing the following resources. Feel free to share them with your students and others in times of need:

Tips for College Students: After a Disaster or Other Trauma

Trauma Model: Unresolved Stress Reactions and Healthy Coping

BYU’s Counseling and Psychological Services: Grief