Community Bids Farewell to Nikolas Ventura-Arencon

Mourners say goodbye to Nikolas Ventura-Arencon at Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church this morning. Photo by Greg Kendall/

Staff Report

Community members, family and friends filled Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church on Canyon Road this morning to say goodbye to Los Alamos High School student Nikolas Ventura-Arencon.

Ventura-Arencon, 14, was a ninth grade student at Los Alamos High School who died in a head-on collision Nov. 21 on N.M. 4 near the White Rock “Y.”

Los Alamos Public Schools is providing grief counseling to students and staff.

The principals at Los Alamos High School and Los Alamos Middle School wrote the following letters sent home with students Tuesday:


November 26, 2012

Dear Los Alamos High School Parents and Guardians,

It is with a great sense of sadness that I write this letter as it is never easy sharing the news of a death of one of our own. As many of you know, there was a tragic car accident on Wednesday, November 21, 2012. Nikolas Ventura-Arencon, a ninth grade student at Los Alamos High School, died as a result of his injuries.

Upon their return to school today, resources for comfort and solace were made available to staff and students. Counselors from the high school, mid school and Pinon, as well as district psychologists, were available for grief counseling for any student. Counselors will follow Nikolas’ class schedule on Monday and Tuesday to ensure that grieving students will be comforted. In addition, counselors will be available to students and staff following funeral services on Wednesday.

The family conveyed a message that friends of Nikolas be allowed to attend the funeral service. To accommodate this wish, students who wish to attend the service on Wednesday for Nikolas will be excused by permission from a parent or guardian.

In closing, know that Nikolas will be missed not only by his classmates and staff, but also by our entire community.


Sandra Warnock

November 26, 2012

Dear Los Alamos Middle School Parents and Guardians,

As many of you know there was a tragic car accident on Wednesday, November 21, and a male high school freshman died as a result of injuries incurred in the accident. Also in the car was a current eighth grade female student that sustained serious injuries, but should fully recover over the following weeks and months.

At 7:30 this morning I met with the middle school staff and reviewed all the information I had knowledge of at that time. The middle school counselors along with the help of two elementary counselors were available this morning to talk with any students or staff that needed grief counseling. Helping students and staff deal with this grief will be a priority this week, especially following the service for the young man this Wednesday.

Students who wish to attend the service on Wednesday will need to be excused by a parent or guardian.

Letters of this type are always difficult to write and done with a heavy heart. As the Principal of the Middle School my condolences go out to the family of the high school student for this tragic loss. Please know that my staff will be very alert to students that are grieving over this incident and we will do our very best to provide support to our students and staff. If there are any questions I can answer please do not hesitate to contact me directly.


Rex Kilburn

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