School district mourns loss of student


In 2014, Taylor Simpson, freshman, and brother Devon Simpson, junior, participate in the ALS ice bucket challenge by dumping ice water on their grandmother, former superintendent, Dr. Joylynn Pruitt.

Lucy Wurst, Co-editor

Taylor Simpson, junior at Lieberman Learning Center, was fatally shot Wednesday on Braddock while leaving school. According to, the survivors and other witnesses told police that two people in a dark-colored sedan drove by and opened fire. The car sped off, heading west on Kempland Place.

Faculty, administration and students in the University City School District are deeply saddened by Simpson’s death. Grief counselors and a pastor were available on Thursday at both Lieberman Learning Center and University City High School where Simpson attended until January.

Memorials to Simpson were displayed around the school, including posters and pictures inside and balloons and signs outside. After school on Thursday, parents, community members and superintendent Sharonica Hardin-Bartley stood outside to show support for grieving students.

In a letter sent by the School District of University City, Hardin-Bartley said, “Our focus right now is on caring for our students and district staff while doing what we can to support Taylor’s family. We ask that you keep them in your thoughts.”

A candle lighting and balloon release was held in honor of Simpson at Fogerty Park on Thursday night.