To Students & Families: A Loss In Our Community

Dear Common Ground Students & Families,

I have really difficult news to share. Last night, Javier Martinez, a member of our senior class, was the victim of a homicide. The police are investigating the situation, and we do not yet know all the details. But we do know that we have lost a really precious member of our school community.

We are all struggling with this loss. We want to make sure that all members of the Common Ground community get the support we need over the coming days and weeks. We also want to honor the fine young man who we have lost from our Common Ground family — and whose warm smile and quiet voice we will not forget.

As a starting point, school will be open on Monday 12-4 to students and to staff who would like to talk and be together. 

We are also putting resources and supports in place for Thursday, our first day back from the holiday break. We will have counselors on site, and will make sure that our students have the time and space they need to talk.

This weekend, our thoughts are with all of you, and with Javi’s family and friends. If you want to talk or have any questions, you can call me at 203.506.4391. If you or your student needs immediate help, don’t hesitate to call 211. 

Here are links to some resources for families, focused on how to support young people coping with trauma:

Take care,

Liz Cox
School Director



  1. faith Dec 28, 2013 at 6:28 pm - Reply

    Thanks Ms Cox for putting this together …This is horrible !

  2. Mrs. Rivas Dec 29, 2013 at 8:54 am - Reply

    Thank you,for the support to the family, as most knows he was Perla’s Boyfriend. I want everyone to please don’t leave her alone and try to keep her busy. He was great son, brother, student,gentleman with my daughter and classmate. He is one of the good people that our community needs. We’ll miss you Javier Martinez. Rest in peace.

    My condolences to his family and Perla I am here for you.

  3. Joan Dec 29, 2013 at 7:05 pm - Reply

    I am sad and shocked to learn of Javier’s death. I was his 7th & 8th grade science teacher at Bishop Woods. I was so excited that he had decided to attend Common Ground! I learned from his grandmother that he had spent the summer working on Block Island and that he was doing well. Javier was one of the smartest students I had taught. He had a natural talent for science and it seemed that his brain was wired naturally to solve complex problems by just thinking about them. I loved his sense of humor, quiet demeanor and the way he would explain his logic. He would linger after class and ask me questions about different things that were on his mind. Javier, I will never forget you. May you fly with the angels and keep your eye on me. I will count on you guiding me until I meet up with you one day. Love, Ms. Thomas

  4. Tashika Jackson Dec 30, 2013 at 7:19 am - Reply

    My deepest sympathy to family and friends. I didn’t know him personally. My son DeMarte Daley was a school mate of Javier’s. He he also sadden by this. Our prayers are with his mother and family during this heart breaking time and here after.

  5. Dawn Cathey Dec 31, 2013 at 10:04 am - Reply

    Dear Common Ground neighbors,

    Your friends at Southern are thinking of you as you deal with the tragic loss of your student, Javier Martinez.

    We are ready and willing to work together to end violence in our community. For now, please know that we are sending love and strength to the Common Ground families.

    Jonathon Ruiz, Chelsea Harry, and Dawn Cathey (FYE service Learning class)

    Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.
    Martin Luther King, Jr.

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