Grief counselors at Piqua High School after student’s death

PIQUA, Ohio (WDTN) – Grief counselors were on hand at Piqua High School to assist classmates of 16-year-old Zachary McDaniel who drowned while fishing in a pond, Sunday.

Piqua City Schools Superintendent Dwayne Thompson said the death was a shock to Zachary’s classmates and the wider school community.

“It’s very tragic and you know, anytime an accident like this happens you just got to kind of think through that and wonder why” Thompson said.

Crews searched for three hours before a dive team located Zachary’s body.

Police say his stepfather tried to help the struggling teen, but by the time he reached him, Zachary had slipped beneath the water.

“Words cannot possibly express what that family is going through right now,” Thompson said.

“On Mother’s Day, on top of it, it’s just a very, very sad moment for us.”

Thompson said the school is doing what it does best in times like this – supporting one another and sharing fond memories.

“Just the spirit of him. Just the things they’re talking about him, in terms of how fun he was to be around,” he said.

“It’s a tragedy but our students are reflecting from it and trying to make the best of the situation so that they can grow and be better individuals.” provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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