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Westfield community standing united after stage collapse

WESTFIELD, Ind. (WISH) – While investigators are working to determine why the high school stage collapsed, families are trying to put the scary night behind them by leaning on each other for support.

In the beginning, there was so much unknown including the amount of people hurt during the collapse and the extent of the injuries.

Now that the dust has settled, the worry parents and teachers felt shifted to a feeling of pride on how the community came together.

A few laughs before first pitch were more than welcome at the varsity softball game on Friday, but parents like Jeff Jellison know a win might not be the only thing on their minds.

“I think there is around the community, there’s a little bit of a somber attitude,” he said.

Less than 24 hours had passed since an endless sea of flashing lights flooded the high school.

Inside, the musical ‘American Pie’ was wrapping up the final number when all the excitement and joy disappeared as the stage collapsed beneath dozens of students.

“I would tell you I think it’s only by the grace of God that there weren’t more serious injuries that occurred there with a 12 foot drop,” said Superintendent Mark Keen.

According to Jellison and several others, the injuries will heal and so will the community.

“People are very positive, very supportive. We know we can go to our community and they’ll help us if we need that,” said Keen.

“I think the credit goes back to those policemen and those firemen last night and the people that were in the audience,” said Jellison.

Many of those same people who jumped into action call the city home, and that’s what they want to define them.

Not the moment when the stage fell through, but how they all came together when support was needed most.

“We’re a community that cares about our neighbors, our kids, our schools. I think that just is the definition of Westfield,” said Jellison.