Seniors hear of tragic story, learn of skills to survive and help


Greta Horton

Rachael’s First Week is a program dedicated to protecting the lives of high school seniors and college freshmen as they transition into young adults. This week, the Senior Class attended and participated in the presentation that has presented to seniors last year and this year. This organization presents at high schools and colleges statewide to spread awareness of the dangers of alcohol and the Life Line law.

Rachael Fiege was a typical teen entering her freshman year at Indiana University. She attended a party where there was alcohol. She fell down the stairs and her friends believed she just bumped her head. Her accident was much more tragic and before she started her first class at IU, she had died.

Through their pain, her family, friends and medical professionals started Rachael’s First Week program.

The medical emergency team offered information and statistics on common issues in high school and college including drugs, alcohol, suicide, and sexual assault. They offered an interactive questionnaire to better connect with the students. The student-led group was able to share personal stories for each issues and discussed ways to avoid tragedies. Senior Lydia Dessauer felt the presentation was powerful. She said, “It was very brave of those who were closest to Rachael to be there. I now feel more prepared for college next year and I think the safety tips really helped.”

The program believes that “Rachael’s untimely death should not be viewed as a tragedy, but as an opportunity for teens to develop their potential as friends, mentors and good citizens while they mature into adulthood.” With that, the seniors of BCHS and other schools will know how to act in certain situations. “It doesn’t happen until it happens to you.”  For more information: