Special church service held for grieving teens
Posted January 15, 2014
Goldsboro, N.C. — A special Wednesday night service was held for teenagers at The Bridge Church still grieving over the deaths of a Goldsboro teen couple that shot and killed themselves on Monday.
The service was a source of refuge for young people seeking strength to cope with their deep sense of loss.
“That’s a member of my family, and to the core it shakes you,” said Andy Stovall, church pastor.
Spenser Terry Garrison, 16, shot and killed himself on Capps Bridge Road near Rosewood High School. Moments later, his girlfriend, Malia K. Porter, 15, used the same gun to shoot herself. She died early Tuesday morning.
It was unclear whether the pair was in the vehicle together or if Porter went to the truck with a friend.
Investigators think that something may have sparked an argument between the couple, but no one knows for sure.
Both attended Rosewood. Both met at The Bridge Church. Both were older siblings to younger sisters.
Wednesday’s service gave grieving teenagers a chance to talk.
“How are you feeling? Where were you when it happened? How is it affecting you,” said Josh Overton, the church’s youth pastor. “Making sure that they’re dealing with it and not push it under the rug and something happens terrible, later down the line.”
Overton and other church leaders wanted the teenagers to know they can turn to the church when life knocks them off their feet.
“Especially in suicide, when the reason that happened is because they went through it by themselves,” he said. “They kept it in. We don’t want to see that happen again.”
Garrison and Porter’s families are finalizing funeral arrangements for services this weekend.