Elementary school teacher killed in tragic fall hours after birthday

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by BERNADETTE JAY / WCNC.com

khou.com

Posted on August 12, 2013 at 8:28 AM

LAKE WYLIE, S.C. -- A Fort Mill teacher died tragically Sunday morning after slipping and falling near Lake Wylie.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg police say the woman, who Fort Mill School officials have identified as Rebecca New, 31, was walking down a set of stairs near a water access when she fell from a 17 foot boat dock and onto some metal pipes below.

According to the police report, the incident happened around 2:30 a.m. Sunday  in the 16000 block of Here at Last Lane. 

Investigators say New was with a group of people when she fell to her death, she was pronounced dead on the scene.

New was an art teacher at Gold Hill Elementary School, according to school Superintendent Chuck Epps.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the family at this very difficult time,"  said Superintendent Epps in an email to NBC Charlotte.

"She was a beloved teacher at GHES (Gold Hill Elementary School) and will be missed by students, teachers, parents and the entire FMSD (Fort Mill School District) family," wrote Epps.

Fort Mill students are scheduled to return to school August  21, while teachers will return this Wednesday August 14.

Officials said grief counselors will be in place for students and staff who may need the services.

New's birthday was three hours prior to the accident, she'd just turned 31.

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