Students in Manchester cope with sudden loss of beloved security - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Students in Manchester cope with sudden loss of beloved security guard

Posted: Updated:
Barry 'Mitch' Mitchell died of an apparent heart attack at Manchester High School on Wednesday. (Manchester Schools photo) Barry 'Mitch' Mitchell died of an apparent heart attack at Manchester High School on Wednesday. (Manchester Schools photo)
MANCHESTER, CT (WFSB) -

With heavy hearts, students and faculty at Manchester High School return to school on Thursday after the sudden loss of a beloved security guard.

Grief counselors and therapy dogs will be on hand following a vigil Wednesday night in the honor of Barry "Mitch" Mitchell.

He died at the high school on Wednesday morning of an apparent heart attack.

Those who knew him said Mitchell did more than just protect students. He truly cared about everyone in his community.

"He was one of the most genuine people that has ever walked on the face of this earth. He was my best friend, and I will always say he's my best friend because he would always lift me up," said a student who did not want to be identified.

School leaders dismissed classes early on Wednesday and by the evening, hundreds of students came to the football field for a vigil to remember Mitchell's life.

"He guided a lot of people through their lives," said former student Eddie Agosto.

Mitchell's 11-year-old son was also in the crowd. "He was the best dad ever. I love him, and he always brought a smile to my face whenever I was sad," explained Barry Mitchell Jr.

Students have set up a GoFundMe page to help Mitchell's family. 

Copyright 2017 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.