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Aurora teacher dies in Mexico over winter break

Photo: GoFundMe

AURORA, Colo. — A well-liked Aurora Public Schools teacher died over the district’s winter break, according to a voice message sent to parents of students at Aurora Hills Middle School.

The audio message left for parents on a school website was voiced by principal Marcella Garcia and titled “teacher death.”

“We are deeply saddened to inform you that one of our teachers, Wendy Welch, passed away in an accident over winter break,” Garcia said. “Our thoughts are with Ms. Welch’s family during this difficult time.

“We have offered condolences and support for her family on behalf of the Aurora Hills community. We know this is sad news, maybe unsettling for students and staff. We have counselors available at the school for those who may need support. Please keep Ms. Welch’s family in your thoughts.”

Students have reportedly been told that Welch, a Spanish teacher, was in a car accident while in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.

Michelle Bowen, a former co-worker of Welch’s, met the victim while the two taught in Denver at Ashford University.

Bowen confirmed that Welch was killed in a car accident and spoke highly of her friend.

“She lived life to the fullest, and was exceedingly kind and equally adventurous,” Bowen said. “She loved her family and friends, and spent her spare time in the mountains hiking and snowboarding. She traveled extensively and always made fast friends.”

A GoFundMe page said the accident happened on New Year’s Eve and proceeds raised would “help alleviate the cost of funeral services and bringing her back home.”

As of Tuesday morning, more than $9,000 had been raised. A statement on the page notes any extra money collected by the family will be donated to a charity close to Welch’s heart, Rainbow Sandals.

Services have not been set.