Grieving Kentuckians 'have Bailey’s and Preston’s example to draw on'


Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell captured the mood of Kentucky on Monday when he expressed to his colleagues and to the nation the pain people in his home state are dealing with in the aftermath of last week’s shooting at Marshall County High School.

“For most of us, this tragedy is barely even conceivable,” McConnell said. “But to the parents of Bailey Holt and Preston Cope, it is now a painful reality.”

Here’s the vivid picture McConnell painted as he paid tribute in the nation’s Capitol to the two students who died in the shooting:

“Bailey Holt was 15 years old and her mother said that she had a ‘perfect, sweet soul.’ She’s been described as compassionate, confident, and comfortable being herself. When she wasn’t busy cheering for the University of Louisville Cardinals, Bailey was always ready with a kind word or a friendly gesture for those who needed it. On social media, her family and friends are using the expression ‘Be Like Bailey,’ encouraging everyone who sees it to act with charity.

“Preston Cope, also 15, was known for being kind, soft-spoken, and a quick learner. He loved reading about history and playing baseball for Marshall County High School and the Calvert City Sluggers. Preston’s friends remember his ability to inspire them and to make them laugh.

“One of Bailey and Preston’s classmates called them ‘the nicest people I ever met. They never had anything negative to say. They always had a smile on their face.’

“This weekend, friends and family gathered at the high school gym by the hundreds to remember Bailey and Preston and to comfort one another. As the other injured students fight to recover, and the entire Marshall County community continues to grieve and heal, they’ll have Bailey’s and Preston’s example to draw on. And they have the prayers of their fellow Kentuckians, of us here in the Senate, and of the entire country.”


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