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updated: 5/31/2013 5:41 PM

Friends remember Benet senior killed by lightning

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  • Jennie Dizon

      Jennie Dizon

  • Signs outside the home of Jennie Dizon of Downers Grove celebrate the 17-year-old who died Thursday after being struck by lightning just days before she would have graduated from Benet Academy in Lisle.

       Signs outside the home of Jennie Dizon of Downers Grove celebrate the 17-year-old who died Thursday after being struck by lightning just days before she would have graduated from Benet Academy in Lisle.
    Marie Wilson | Staff Photographer

 
 

Family and friends are mourning a Downers Grove teen who was struck and killed by lightning Thursday, just days before she was set to graduate from Benet Academy in Lisle.

The DuPage County coroner's office said Jennie Dizon, 17, was found unresponsive about 5:20 p.m. Thursday at O'Brien Park along Dunham Road south of 68th Street, in Downers Grove, just a few blocks from her home.

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A statement released from the coroner's office said a preliminary exam indicates Dizon died from "electrocution consistent with a lightning strike."

Benet Academy officials declined to comment but released a statement Friday morning.

"Benet Academy is mourning the loss of senior Jennie Dizon who passed into eternal life last evening, apparently having been struck by lightning during a thunderstorm. Throughout the day (Friday), Benet's chaplain, campus minister, counselors, administrators and teachers have been available in the chapel, in their offices, in classrooms, and throughout the school building to offer assistance, comfort and consolation to our students and members of the school community," the statement read. "Please join the entire Benet Family in remembering Jennie and the Dizon family in prayer."

The school's senior class will graduate at 1:30 p.m. Sunday in Lisle.

Jennie leaves behind her parents, Eric and Marietta Dizon; sister, Emmeline, a sophomore; and brother Michael, an incoming freshman.

At the family's home on Friday, a pale yellow tri-level with flowering trees in the front yard, some of Jennie's friends stopped to offer condolences to the teen's immediate and extended family and to comfort each other Friday afternoon.

A sign placed next to Benet Academy signs congratulating Jennie on her graduation said she would always be in the prayers of her friends. Within the bubble-letters of her name, friends wrote Jennie was "always so joyful, enthusiastic," and she had the "craziest dance moves," and a "beautiful voice, smile, lovable laugh."

Neighbors described the Dizons as a tight-knit, religious family.

A wake will be held from 3 to 9 p.m. both Sunday and Monday at Hallowell & James Funeral Home, 301 75th St., Downers Grove. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Tuesday at St. Scholastica Church, 7800 Janes Ave., Woodridge.

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