DEAR ABBY: Feb. 4 was a sad day. One less child is going to come back to school. He will never eat pizza, play games or laugh again. He passed away last night.
William Brown died on Feb. 3 in an icy pond in Chesapeake, Va. He and some other boys were playing on an iced-over pond when the ice broke. Two of the boys got out, and 911 people pulled one boy out of the pond. Sadly, William could not be revived. He died after 45 minutes in the freezing water. He wasn't even a teen-ager yet.
I had seen William in the halls at school, and he was probably in my class at one point or another. When I heard he had died, I started to cry. How could this happen to someone so young?
I want to make sure no more children die the way William did. Please, Abby, warn your readers about the danger of ice. Even if the ice looks thick, it often isn't. It may break, and you could drown. William learned the hard way.
No laughter was heard in school today. The flag will be raised only halfway. One less person will come back to school -- because of thin ice. -- KRISTEN MC CARTHY, AGE 12, CHESAPEAKE, VA.
DEAR KRISTEN: My deepest sympathy goes out to William Brown's family. Your heartfelt warning deserves space in my column. Thank you for writing.