Pender County Schools releases statement on death of two students

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PENDER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — Pender County Schools mourns the loss of two students  killed in a car accident over the weekend.

The crash happened on Saturday on Interstate 140, near the overpass for Highway 117.

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The NC Highway Patrol says Martha Holyfield, of Willard, hydroplaned and ran off the road. The car overturned and ended up partially submerged in a drain culvert.

Both of her children, Brittany Holyfield, 16, and Calvin Ennis, Junior, 7, were killed.

Late Monday afternoon, Pender County Schools released the following statement:



“It is with profound sadness that Pender County Schools confirms the loss of two students from our district. Over the weekend, the lives of Pender High School junior Brittany Holyfield and Penderlea School second-grader Calvin Ennis Jr. were tragically cut short. Our heartfelt condolences are with their family and friends as they mourn during this time.

A quiet but determined leader, Brittany Holyfield ascended the ranks of Pender High’s JROTC program quickly during her three years at the school, becoming a platoon leader with the Alpha Company. She helped oversee numerous charitable events, including blood drives and recycling days. Teachers labeled her as a motivated student who put the betterment of others ahead of herself. Her poised demeanor and leadership set an example for all.

Described by the staff at Penderlea School as a loving, joyful student, Calvin Ennis Jr. displayed a passion for uplifting others. Each day, teachers say he began by kneeling next to his desk and saying a prayer. Throughout the day, he would hug his fellow students and the school’s staff, telling them he loved them. His knack for singing and dancing, his eagerness to learn and his beaming smile will be sorely missed by all.

When class resumes following spring break, grief counselors will be available at both schools to talk with during the healing process. Pender County Schools remains dedicated to providing the resources our students and staff need during this time of sorrow.”