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BHHS Student Dies After Collapsing on Campus Friday

Hundreds of people attend a memorial service Sunday at the high school for Elena Natanzadeh.

A 15-year-old sophomore at  collapsed on campus Friday morning and died shortly afterward.

Elena Natanzadeh, who graduated from in 2010, died of an undetermined ailment.

Administrators at the Beverly Hills Unified School District, under direction from the family, did not identify the student nor release any specific details of her death. BHUSD Superintendent Gary Woods confirmed the news Sunday morning via an email and automated phone call to BHHS families.

“I am writing this morning to inform you that … a Beverly Hills High School student collapsed on campus Friday morning due to what appeared to be a medical condition,” Woods said on Sunday morning.

“First responders provided immediate support and the student was transported to a local hospital within minutes. Unfortunately, medical personnel were unable to revive the student. The family has asked for privacy and we ask that their wishes be respected,” he said. “Grief counselors will be available on Monday for any students, faculty or staff affected by this terrible loss. … We send our deepest condolences to the family of the student.”

More than 200 hundred people attended a memorial service Sunday afternoon on the front lawn of the BHHS campus after being notified of the remembrance via Facebook.

“Elena’s favorite color was purple, so please try to wear purple tomorrow,” suggested the Facebook post, which said it was created by eight of her friends. More than 950 people responded to the post.

High school personnel and grief counselors were among those who attended the service, where prayers in Hebrew were read. All in attendance were invited to light a candle. Natanzadeh’s grief-stricken father asked for people to do a kind act this week in memory of his daughter.

Amidst the mourning, a woman attending the service collapsed, hitting her head on the sidewalk. Paramedics were called.

Natanzadeh’s may be the first student death at the high school, though other BHHS students have died off school grounds in the past.

“As far as I can recall, there has never been a death of a student on campus,” Board of Education member Myra Lurie told Patch.

Editor's Note: This story has been edited to remove student commentary regarding Natanzadeh’s death. The circumstances surrounding her passing remain unclear.

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Barry Brucker September 12, 2011 at 04:57 PM
On behalf of the City of Beverly Hills, we offer our heartfelt condolences to the family of Elana Natanzadeh. Barry Brucker, Mayor City of Beverly Hills
Jon Gluck September 12, 2011 at 06:13 PM
Very tragic and sad. Thoughts are with Elena's family.
Lydia Cornell September 12, 2011 at 06:25 PM
Our prayers go out to you and your family. You were a friend of my stepson and Shivani and Kiana, the sweet girls in our neighborhood who went to Beverly Vista. Everyone says Elena is and was the sweetest, kindest soul with a heart of gold. You will live forever in all our hearts. Everyone who knew you loved you. You will not be forgotten. God Bless you and your family, loved ones, and all the students. Rest in Peace and FLY with the angels Elena. Love xoxoxoxo
frances bilak September 12, 2011 at 07:03 PM
She must have had a beautiful neshama. May G-d comfort you among the other mourners of Zion and Jerusalem.
Ellen Santiago September 12, 2011 at 11:50 PM
I'm completely heartbroken with this tragic lost. Dear Elena I never met you...and I knew how a special girl you were. I know that you have to be one of the most beautiful angels. My prayers are for you and you dearest family. Your Mother and father are in my heart and soul all this time. You would always be remembered and missed immensely. God Bless you my child and Rest in Peace. Peace and all my love for you and your family...This is so sad. xoxoxoxoxoxooxo Love <3
Laurie Lande September 13, 2011 at 02:18 AM
Mr, Sappenfield, The story is consistent. Elena was a BHHS sophmore and a graduate of Beverly Vista, one of our city's kindergarten through eighth grade schools. Our deepest condolences go to Elena's family.
Lmy September 13, 2011 at 04:21 PM
Such a sad tragedy. Prayers and positive thoughts to her family and friends.
OCmom September 13, 2011 at 04:57 PM
this article is confusing... was she a sophmore or did she graduate in 2010???
Michelle Carroll September 13, 2011 at 05:33 PM
I'm a mother of 5 children...I've heard the sayin a child should never go before a parent..Every loss in life is hard but the hardest and worst is your own child! My prayers, heart, and whole harded SYMPATHY goes out to her mother and father and family...Know that many are prayering for you and the loss of your daugher...She sounds astounding and beautiful. I'm very sorry for you..and I know it's hard to believe but she is in a wonderful place and being takin care of..We always want to know why but are to never ask...I worked in the E.R. as a trauma nurse and have seen these type of things happen and have crIed w/ the families...So your loss is devistating..But know, God has wrapped his arms around you and is wanting you to know she is watching over you and is happy..Please take care of yourself..The saying, "It'll get better in time" doesn't always stand true. You'll always have a little part of her missing but always remember the happy, laughter and awesome moments those are the ones that'll get you through the worst days...MY PRAYERS, LOVE, AND GOD'S SPEED ARE W/ YOUR FAMILY AND ESP YOU MOM BECAUSE A CHILD IS YOUR LIFE AND WHEN SOMETHING HAPPENS TO THEM IT'S THE HARDEST BUT YOU WILL BE DETERMINED AND KNOW MANY OF YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY WILL BE THERE FOR YOU!!!!
Ellen Santiago September 13, 2011 at 05:48 PM
Dear Michelle; Your words of wisdom make me cried. Well said...its devastating. Love for all of them <3
Marie Cunningham (Editor) September 13, 2011 at 07:20 PM
Beverly Vista is a K-8 school in Beverly Hills. Elena was a sophomore at Beverly Hills High School.
Debbie Rath September 13, 2011 at 11:23 PM
I am heartbroken as a parent in general and a parent of a child attending Beverly Hills High School. Although we did not know this young lady it is difficult knowing this could happen to any of us, or our children... at any moment. My heart goes out to the parents of this 15 year old girl who had her entire life ahead of her. I hope they find some peace somehow. Know that many are thinking about your family at this most difficult time in your lives and sending love.
Max Philisaire September 15, 2011 at 07:27 PM
God Bless her soul...her family is in my prayers
Erin strickland May 12, 2012 at 12:44 AM
Elena I misss you soooooooooooooooooooooooo much dear i just thought of our squidward moments and i cant stop crying :( but i know your in a better place


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