Local Family, School Dealing with Loss - Local news, weather, sports Savannah | WSAV On Your Side

Local Family, School Dealing with Loss

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James Groves III was killed in helicopter crash in Afghanistan Saturday James Groves III was killed in helicopter crash in Afghanistan Saturday

While the war in Iraq is now ten years old, the war in Afghanistan is nearly 12 years old, and still claiming the lives of our soldiers.  this month alone, 8 members of the 3rd Infantry Division were killed.

The latest was Chief Warrant Officer James Groves III.  

His family, including a 12 and 9 year old are mourning his death, and an entire community, including his two children, are dealing with their grief.

An almost 20 year veteran, James Groves III was killed in a helicopter crash in Kandahar this weekend.

He left behind a wife and two children, both under the age of 13.

They are dealing with the loss of a father, their elementary school classmates trying to understand death.

Its something that school counselors and social workers are helping with, but in the end they say friends may be the key.

"Who are they closest with at school? Who is someone they can trust?" said Savannah-Chatham Schools social worker Jeff Baker. "Is there someone at the school you can go to. And often times it will be a close friend they can talk to. That they can share more with."

Sometimes sharing with friends isn't enough. that's why each school has a counselor on hand to do their part, and 15 social workers in the county at the ready for just this type of situation.

Baker says making kids aware of death is important, as is making them aware that you are there to help, and listen.

"Letting them know that if they ever need to talk about things or they are just feeling overwhelmed, there are things for them," explained Baker. "In my experience kids tend to deal with grief in their own way, unique to each child, but knowing that you have people that you can go to, that there's an adult outside their extended family that trusts, would be excellent."

James Groves III had done two tours of Iraq before going to Afghanistan.

His mother says Groves was expected to retire after this tour, and 20 years in the Army.  

The Chief Warrant Officer will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery.  

He was 37 years old.

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