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Norwalk Girls Rally Around Friend in Need

Everyone agrees that Teanna Escourse is quiet, but that hasn't stopped the teenager from forming loyal friendships. When the Brien McMahon High School junior was hit by a car and critically injured on New Year's Eve, those friends didn't hesitate to help.

Chelcia Foster and Stacey Miobin got an idea: They would raise money for Teanna and her family. Ten more girls swiftly joined them, and they made ribbons to sell and donation boxes to collect money.

Principal Suzanne Brown Koroshetz is impressed. "They immediately wanted to do something," she said. "They knew that it was important to do something to show her the kind of support that she had from her friends. They came right away and said, 'Listen, this is what we want to do, how fast can we do it?' I said, 'I don't know, how fast can you make boxes?' The next day they had boxes out there."

Chelcia, Stacey, Amanda Burden, Brittany Smith, Chatyra Edwards, McKayla Foster, Paola Vega, Diamond Sead, A'dashia Goodwin, Darenea Holland, Danielle Pelletier and Kiara Goodwin take turns staffing the boxes during the three lunch shifts at the high school. They sell the ribbons – they're purple because that's Teanna's favorite color – for $3 each. Teanna's sister, Brianna Fearon, is also involved.

They say they have raised "a lot." Why do they do it? "I love her and she just needs the help," said Danielle, a senior.

Brittany, a senior, agreed. "We need to help her realize she has support, besides her family, other people that care for her in school," she said.

Teanna remains in critical condition, and her friends have not been able to visit her. Everyone has fond thoughts of Teanna, whose favorite catch phrase is "Oh My Lanta," and they say they will always be there for her.

"She's loving, and really pretty," said Darenea, a senior. "She likes to joke all the time, say good things about people."

Chatyra is a senior who has known Teanna since she was a freshman. "She was like a little sister to me," Chatyra said of Teanna.

McKayla, a freshman, chimed in, too. "My sister and Teanna's sister are like best friends," she said. "She was always around. I feel for her a lot."

Paola, a senior, said she has learned to "be more appreciative." Amanda, a junior, agreed. "Anything can happen," she said.

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