Middle school cheerleader, 13, falls ill and dies suddenly ‘after suffering a medical emergency’ before her weekend team competition
- Lilliana Schalck, a middle-schooler from Kentucky, fell ill and died on Saturday
- She was set to take part in a cheerleader completion with a private group in Columbus, Ohio
- Schalck’s cause of death has not been released, with officials saying only that she suffered an unspecified medical emergency
A Kentucky middle school community was plunged into mourning after a beloved 13-year-old cheerleader unexpectedly passed away over the weekend.
Lilliana Schalck was scheduled to take part in a cheerleader competition in Ohio on Saturday when she suddenly fell ill.
The girl from Fort Thomas, Kentucky, was taken to a hospital in Columbus, where her condition quickly deteriorated and she died.
Tragic and sudden: Middle school cheerleader Lilliana Schalck, 13, fell ill and died on Saturday
As of Monday morning, the cause of Schalck’s death has not been released.
The teen was an eighth-grader at Highlands Middle School in Fort Thomas, but she competed with the high school varsity team.
She was also a member of a private cheerleading, gymnastics and dance team called Premier Athletics of Northern Kentucky.
On Saturday, Schalck and her teammates at Premier Athletics traveled to Columbus to compete in a cheerleader contest, reported Cincinnati Enquirer.
After the girl’s death, her fellow cheerleaders held a moment of silence at the event to honor Schalck.
On Sunday, Highlands Middle School hosted a vigil, which drew hundreds of students, teachers and members of the local community.
Schalck was set to take part in a cheerleading competition in Ohio, but suffered an unspecified medical emergency, which led to her passing
The beloved student-athlete was an eighth-grader at Highlands Middle School in Kentucky, but she competed with the high school varsity team
A blue ribbon bearing a touching message of love and the date of Schalck’s death is pictured tied around a tree in her honor
The somber gathering was held in the school gymnasium, where a photo of Schalck surrounded by blue spider mums served as the centerpiece.
‘She is beloved by so many and we know our students will need help through the grieving process,’ Fort Thomas Independent Schools Superintendent Karen Cheser wrote in a message to parents at the school confirming Schalck’s tragic passing.
Kevin Nieporte, the school’s athletic director, described Schalck as one of the school’s most gifted cheerleaders, who was also an excellent student and popular among her peers.
Principal Michael Howton told WKRC that Lilliana was interested in journalism and wrote about sports.
Grief counselors will be available to students and staff throughout the week.