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A 16-year-old Hamilton High School student is dead, and a 15-year-old boy is hospitalized after they apparently overdosed.

Coroner and Ravalli County Sheriff Steve Holton confirmed on Monday that the two juveniles were found Sunday morning. The 16-year-old was pronounced dead at the scene, and the other boy was transported by ambulance to Marcus Daly Memorial Hospital.

According to Hamilton Police Chief Ryan Oster, officers were dispatched to a residence in The Arbors subdivision at 7:47 a.m. Sunday, after a report came in of someone who wasn't breathing. When the officer arrived, he performed CPR, but to no avail.

Oster said the investigation is ongoing, so he didn't want to make too much information available, but he believes the teenage boys ingested prescription drugs.

"An overdose is what is apparent at this point," he said. "We'll be waiting on some lab work to come back and then investigate the circumstances.

"Our hearts go out to the families."

Principal Dan Kimzey couldn't be reached for comment, but the school's Facebook page noted that on Monday morning, students at Hamilton High School and Hamilton Middle School were informed about the death and the "serious medical situation" involving the 15-year-old.

"The district’s role is to support students, families and staff through this tragedy while trying to present accurate information and dispel rumors," noted the Hamilton High School's Facebook page. "We had additional professionals and counseling areas set up for students and staff to use throughout the day and will continue to support and follow-up with students as needed.

"Our thoughts are with the families who are deeply hurting at this time."

Holton added that with tragedies like this, the entire community is affected.

"It just hits home," he said. "We're sending prayers for the families involved and the other students. Something like this affects the whole community." 


Associate Editor

Associate Editor at The Ravalli Republic