Columbia High School students were grappling this week with the loss of a friend and former South Orange-Maplewood district student Caleb Shammeh Fant, age 18, who was killed in a road accident on October 14 when he and his brother Emmanuel were stalled by the side of the road in Spartanburg, S.C. Caleb attended South Orange Middle School before moving to South Carolina with his family,
Emmanuel remains hospitalized with his injuries. The driver of the car that struck Caleb and Emmanuel has been arrested and charged with felony DUI with death, felony DUI with great bodily injury and reckless homicide.
As counselors helped students deal with this loss at Spartanburg High School, Columbia High School has also been providing support to local students.
In a letter sent via email CHS families on October 18, Interim Principal Dr. Kalisha Morgan wrote, “We are shocked and saddened by this tragic event. It has come to my attention that this tragic event has directly impacted some of our CHS students. The purpose of this communication is to ensure that you are informed, so that you can discuss this with your child in a manner that you and your family are comfortable with. Caleb Fant was tragically killed in a three vehicle collision on October 14, 2019. Caleb was a student at SOMS until June, 2015. He was a senior at Spartanburg High School (South Carolina). We have made our student assistance counselors and our guidance counselors available to any student at CHS if they need support. In addition, please also be aware of the attached resources that you and your family may find helpful. Thank you for your ongoing support. Our thoughts are with the Fant family during this time of loss and grief.”