The recent tragic loss of an 11-year-old Hallsville girl during a hunting accident has brought the community together in grief — and love, the city’s mayor said.
“Hallsville is a very unique place,” Mayor Jesse Casey said Friday. “There’s a lot of family values and compassion for your fellow man here.”
Daisy Grace Lynn George died Nov. 27 while hunting with her father. She was a sixth-grade student at Hallsville Junior High.
“It was a crushing thing for an accident like this to happen,” Casey said. “In a tragic time, all we can do is show love to one another.”
The Saturday of Daisy’s death, started with her doing what she loved — hunting with her father.
“Growing up in Hallsville, our baby frog was a true country girl from her camo hat and fish hook to her bare feet,” her obituary with Welch Funeral Home said. “Daisy loved the outdoors. She loved catching frogs, playing soccer with her friends and siblings, but what made her day was going hunting and fishing with her dad.”
Harrison County Sheriff Brandon “B.J.” Fletcher said during a Monday press conference that Daisy and her father had gotten into their vehicle after hunting Saturday afternoon at a deer lease near Young and Hickey roads. The father was clearing the hammer of his high-powered rifle and when he tried to drop the hammer, he believed the firearm was unloaded. The rifle went off and killed his daughter.
She was taken to Good Shepherd Medical Center in Longview, where she was later pronounced dead.
“A piece of our hearts is gone as we lost our angel too soon,” her family wrote in her obituary.
Daisy’s favorite color was purple. Hallsville Junior High asked students and staff to wear purple in Daisy’s honor on the Monday following her death. Fletcher asked the community to wear purple for the town’s Christmas Parade on Tuesday evening. Residents attended wearing purple shirts, bows and ribbons to honor Daisy.
“It was kind of a combination of things,” Casey said. “The celebration of the Christmas spirit and, at the same time, everyone has this at the back of their mind. A sorrow and feelings of concern for the family.”
Sandra Walker, who owns Hallsville Floral & Gifts on Main Street, made bows and flip-over ribbons for the parade. She said an employee at Texas Farm Bureau gave her the idea.
“I’m just the hand,” Walker said. “It was an excellent idea.”
She handed them out to paradegoers who wanted to wear them.
“That’s Hallsville,” Walker said. “That’s what they do.”
Though she never met Daisy, she said she has seen the community bond together through the tragedy of the girl’s death.
“One of her teachers came in yesterday and was talking about how sweet she (Daisy) was, how bubbly she was.”
Hallsville Junior High Assistant Principal Melissa Torrence remembered Daisy as “sweet, quiet and caring,” according to TylerPaper news partner CBS19.
“She means a lot to our community and a great deal to our school and our students and teachers here,” Torrence said.
“She’ll be missed, but she won’t be forgotten,” said Clayton Farrell, the school’s principal.
According to her obituary, Daisy was a talented drawer and loved crafting.
“Daisy was a jokester as well,” the obituary said. “She would brighten your day with her jokes and quick come backs. Most importantly, she loved spending time with her family and friends.”
A GoFundMe page created to raise money for funeral expenses had raised more than $16,000 bond Friday, well past its $10,000 goal.
On the page, Deborah George called Daisy “an angel whose time was cut very short.”
Donations to the page ranged from $5 to $1,000.
Casey said the community is there for the family.
“There are loving, kind hearts willing to help in any way they can,” he said.
A life celebration for Daisy is set for 2 p.m. Wednesday at Welch Funeral Home in Longview.