ARCADIA — After a tragic accident forced Hamilton Heights to cancel its prom earlier this month, students will get a second chance to attend the special event in early June after an outpouring of support from their community.
Hamilton Heights High School senior Lendon Byram and his date, Kalen Hart, were killed in a car crash on May 1 on their way to prom.
After hearing of the crash, Hamilton Heights canceled all prom activities and use the location as a place for students to go and meet with grief counselors and gather as they learned of their classmate's tragic death.
"The crushing event touched lives near and far," Hamilton Heights said in an email sent to WRTV. "Individuals and businesses continue to coalesce around our community in unbelievable ways. The ongoing care, concern, and support brings a little sunshine even on the darkest of days."
The school system says the owners of Maple Lane Pavilion have offered to host a second prom, free of charge, for the students from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Thursday, June 3. Bowl 32 in Noblesville has also offered to host an after-prom event free to students from 12 a.m. until 2 a.m.
"Over the past year and a half so much has been taken away and lost, that this was something our school corporation felt should take place for the students who had been preparing and planning for the May prom event," the school system said.
Along with the free venue, Hamilton Heights says they have received offers from multiple other businesses to help students to be able to attend their prom.
The following businesses have offered services free of charge to students:
- Louie's Tux Shop: Offering free tux rental to any Hamilton Heights student attending prom
- J. Everett Career Center: Cosmetology instructors will provide free hair services to students
Any Hamilton Heights student wishing to attend the newly scheduled prom date on June 3 will need to show their original prom ticket to get in. Students who do not wish to attend can request a full refund or donate the cost of their ticket to the Kalen Hart memorial fund.
Following prom on June 3, students will also have the opportunity to participate in a sky lantern glow where they can write a memory, wish, quote or hope for their future on a lantern. The lanterns will then be lighted and release over the fields.
"Our hearts are full in the love and generosity of so many who have come together to help our students and community navigate this tragedy while making it possible to provide a traditional milestone event for our junior/senior students this year," the school said.