Remembering Jenny Weiland

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By Sam Jones
By Benjy Jeffords

GALLATIN COUNTY -- It was supposed to be a fun-filled family trip. A quick visit to Garden of the Gods after school, but it went horribly wrong. Tuesday afternoon, Jenny Weiland, of Ridgway, fell 100 feet from one of the cliffs and was killed. The tragic accident has left her family torn apart.

“I love her and I wish she was back,” grandmother Lois Lynch urged.

Family and Friends leaned on one another just a day after the death of 12-year-old Jenny Weiland.

“Obviously he had bigger plans for her than what was here on earth for her,” admitted mother Rachel Lynch.

They focused on the good times. Happy memories they now cling to.

“Going for little walks, holding her hand or if I was upset she would hold my hand and say I'm here I love you,” she added.

Grandma Lynch helped raise the sixth grader.

“I think she was my willpower,” Lois said.

“She loved her family very, very much. She loved to spend time with her family,” Rachel recalled.

Now they'll never forget Tuesday night, when family time turned tragic.

Signs warn about the dangers of high cliffs at Garden of the Gods, but the family never expected what happened next, as Jenny played around in the Chimney Rock Area.

“She slipped and we tried to catch her, but we couldn't. Her shirt ripped and she just fell. And we couldn't get to her,” said Rachel.

Her mother's fiance and sister's boyfriend tried to catch Jenny. They were injured in the process, but it was too late.

“I would gladly take her place just to have her back,” Rachel conceded.

Now they're left grieving the loss of a little girl who wanted to be a nurse, to help special kids.

Jenny Weiland will be laid to rest on Saturday, May 24. Visitation will be held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Cox and Son funeral home in Ridgway. A funeral will follow immediately after, at the Westwood Cemetery in Shawneetown.

The family asks for all the prayers and support they can get.

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