Lisa was a person the school was proud of
LISA Cash is this week being remembered as a “friendly, patient and kind” young woman, as all at St Aidan’s Community School unite in sadness and grief.
A past pupil of St Aidan’s CS, Lisa sat her Leaving Certificate in 2021 and is being warmly remembered as teachers, parents and students support each other through the tragic loss of the 18-year-old and her younger siblings, Christy and Chelsea.
“Since this happened, teachers have been coming to me and telling me the most wonderful things about Lisa Cash and how lovely a person she was,” Kevin Shortall, St Aidan’s CS Principal, told The Echo.
“They have spoken of how gentle she was and how diligent she was in school.
“How friendly, patient and kind she was.
“How she was a great supporter of her friends and looked out for everybody.”
Mr Shortall spoke of how Lisa had recently been in touch with St Aidan’s looking for a reference.
“Lisa was in touch looking for a reference at the start of the summer, she had a plan in place for what she was going to do this year, but sadly she won’t be able to go through with it,” Mr Shortall said.
“She wanted to do well and [when in St Aidan’s] worked with her school and teachers and collaborated – there was a great relationship between Lisa and her teachers.
“Lisa was a person that the school was extremely proud of.
“You could trust her, she was such a trustworthy, lovely person.”
In recent days, the collective grief following the loss of Lisa, Christy and Chelsea has manifested itself into an outpouring of support for their family and friends – and for those living and working in the immediate and wider Tallaght area.
According to Mr Shortall, St Aidan’s has had offers of support from right across the country, including offers from the many schools here in Tallaght, local businesses, services and groups.
“This is a community tragedy, a community of which St Aidan’s is a very significant part,” he told The Echo.
“This is our tragedy too, and young people are feeling it very deeply.
“We also have over 20 staff members who are former pupils and are members of the community, and they too are very closely connected to this.”
As a school community, St Aidan’s is responding to the needs of its staff, students, parents and neighbours.
St Aidan’s Pastoral Care, Critical Incident and Leadership teams are meeting regularly, with the school engaging with the National Educational Psychological Service (NEPS).
A room at the Brookfield school has also been made available as a meeting hub for the many different agencies and groups currently working with and supporting the community.
“We are adapting our response each day as needs arise,” Mr Shortall said.
“We’re meeting staff regularly, liaising with primary schools . . . and we’ve sent out support material to parents and families on how to approach this.
“We’re also planning a series of different events for students in the school, gentle ways for students to express themselves and to process.”
When The Echo visited St Aidan’s on Tuesday, students were writing messages to the family of Lisa, Christy and Chelsea and taking time to pause and remember at a small altar set-up in the foyer.
In a message to the wider community, Mr Shortall encouraged anybody who needs help for themselves or their family to reach out and connect with the supports and services available.
Anybody who is unsure of where to turn, can contact St Aidan’s Community School on 01 4524677.