Officials are stunned after a principal took his own life in a parking lot only moments after a meeting


Tragedy struck a small town in east Texas on Tuesday afternoon when a high school principal was found dead in the parking lot — reportedly as a result of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Kirbyville High School Principal Dennis Reeves was finishing up the school year and met with his district’s superintendent and assistant superintendent, a meeting where he handed in his resignation before taking his own life. Police were notified when the superintendent saw Reeves’ truck running in the parking lot an hour after the meeting finished.

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When Kirbyville Police Department officers arrived on the scene, they found Reeves in his truck with his foot still on the brake. The late educator held a .380 semiautomatic pistol in his lap. Police Chief Paul Brister said that the officers did not find a note, and nothing on the scene indicated foul play. Classes have not been in session all week and the only people believed to be on the campus were administrators.

Reeves was married and had two sons, one of whom is a 2017 high school graduate. The New York Post spoke to Reeves’ brother-in-law on Thursday morning, and was told that the principal was well-liked. He explained, “there’s nothing that indicated that he would do anything like this […] we don’t know of anything.”

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Kirbyville superintendent Tommy Wallis said that the meeting Reeves left was a standard end-of-the-year meeting and that the educator was not under “any disciplinary action or criminal investigations.”

On Wednesday evening, as dusk was descending upon the small town, the school community mourned the loss of their leader, gathering outside of the high school. One student told 12NewsNow that “he’d talk to you about anything, if he thought something was going on he would ask you […] he told us now we graduated he’d be there for us no matter what and we had a lot more memories to make with him.”

Another student recalled “he made a big impact on our school and on me, he was just a godly man.”

According to KTRE, the justice of the peace has ordered an autopsy.

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