Kosmos was found outside the vehicle, while Chanette was still strapped inside.
“We are profoundly saddened by the loss of two wildcats, Alissa Chenette and Chris Kosmos,” said principal Brookie Honeycutt. “Both loved their school and had a zest for life. Their cheerful smiles and greetings always brightened my day. These students were very active in many programs, including the band, at West Johnston and they left a void that will be hard to fill. We extend our heartfelt sympathies to their family and friends.”
Since confirmation of the students’ identities did not occur until after school dismissed, students were notified of their deaths Monday evening via Connect Ed, a phone messaging system.
Band directors David Duffy and Garret Griffin released the following statement regarding their students:
"Chris Kosmos and Alissa Chenette were members of the marching band here at West Johnston and they will be missed by everyone here. Chris had been a 4 year member of the Marching Band and was one of the Senior Tuba Leaders this past fall helping the younger members of the section with their marching and music. His guidance was an integral part of the band success this past fall season. Chris also had switched to Tuba from bass clarinet last year to help the band out because we needed more tubas to go the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade and would help out the band whenever needed. Alissa was a third year member of the WJHS colorguard and had started her beginnings in the McGee's Middle School Winterguard program. She, as well, helped the younger members of the flag line this year with the routines that they were given. Having to miss band camp this summer Alissa showed her strength by putting in extra time to catch up where she had missed and this really showed her dedication and love for what she was doing here at West Johnston. Alissa was also a member of the Winterguard for two seasons here at West Johnston performing as a flag, rifle and sabre."
Johnston County Schools spokeswoman Terri Sessoms said grief counselors will be on campus for students and staff on Tuesday, March 30 and will remain at the school until they are no longer needed.
Johnston County was under a flood warning throughout the day Monday after heavy rain caused an overflow of rivers and creeks and the flooding of numerous area roads.