Hogan Prep Elementary honors students killed in shooting with 'B - KCTV5 News

Hogan Prep Elementary honors students killed in shooting with 'Buddy Benches'

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Nearly two years ago, Montell and Jayden died when someone shot into their house. (Submitted) Nearly two years ago, Montell and Jayden died when someone shot into their house. (Submitted)
The school honored the boys with two Buddy Benches bearing the names of the two best friends. (Nathan Vickers/KCTV5 News) The school honored the boys with two Buddy Benches bearing the names of the two best friends. (Nathan Vickers/KCTV5 News)
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

An elementary school graduation was tinged with sadness Tuesday, but the school is using the heartbreak to do something kind for its future students.

It was a day for cheers and parents snapping photos at Hogan Prep Elementary as the school recognizes its fifth-graders moving up to middle school.

Aishah Coppage's oldest boy stood among the future Class of 2025, but the memories of two other students weigh heavily on her family. Nearly two years ago, her son Montell and nephew Jayden died when someone shot into their house.

"We were at home," she said.

Jayden would have been one of the young graduates Tuesday. His cousin, Montell, was a year behind him.

"Both of those boys loved their school. They loved Hogan," Coppage said.

The school honored the boys with two Buddy Benches bearing the names of the two best friends.

"It tugged at my heart," Coppage said.

Buddy Benches are for kids who might new to school and don't know anyone yet or for kids who just need a friend.

"One thing that stands out about them is what good friends they were," said Amber White, principal at Hogan Prep Elementary.

White says Jayden and Montell both went out of their way to talk to other students and make them feel included. It's something her school values.

"We thought it was a perfect way to celebrate their legacy here," White said.

As the school remembers the two boys, Coppage is asking people for help finding the people who killed them. After two years, her family is still searching for answers.

"I'm just hoping someone will speak up," she said.

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