Auction planned to support grieving school

Tim Foley
Tim Foley
A former Shortland Street star is among a group of St Leonards School alumni hoping to alleviate some of the community's pain following the death of two of the school's pupils last week.

Tim Foley, of Auckland, and fellow former pupil Josh Webb, of New York, started the Facebook group ''St Leonards Alumni and Friends'' to organise an auction to raise funds for the school and community following the deaths of Bradley (9) and Ellen (6) Livingstone last Wednesday.

The children were shot and killed by their father, Edward Livingstone, before he killed himself in the St Leonards home the children shared with their mother, Mr Livingstone's estranged wife, Katharine Webb.

Mr Foley said the group, which had about 50 members, hoped to stage the auction in about two to four weeks. He hoped the funds raised could be used to help the school community heal.

Among the confirmed auction items were a walk-on role in Shortland Street and donated artwork.

St Leonards School principal Jo Wilson said support from the community and former pupils had been ''overwhelming . . .which is just brilliant''.

Bradley and Ellen Livingstone.
Bradley and Ellen Livingstone.
''Everybody is doing what they need to do. They are looking out for each other and they all know we are there, which makes it as easy as it can be.''

School staff last week opened a bank account for donations to be made to Ms Webb and Mrs Wilson said about $3000 had been deposited into the account by yesterday afternoon.

The school would be open again todayfrom 10am for any pupils or parents who wanted to ''touch base''. A counsellor would visit the school today to speak to staff and assess the needs of the pupils. A separate counsellor would be helping staff.

Dunedin Clutha area commander Inspector Greg Sparrow said yesterday the investigation into the deaths was continuing and ''there is still a significant number of inquiries to complete''.

The scene examination finished on Saturday.

Another Facebook page called ''RIP Bradley and Ellen Livingstone'' had received more than 4200 likes by late yesterday. Dozens of comments in support of Ms Webb and the children's family had been posted.

The Dunedin Orienteering Club - of which Bradley and Ellen were members - paid tribute to the children with a message on its website.

''They made a wonderful contribution to the energy and life of our club.''

The children's funerals will be held at St Leonards School on Saturday.

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