SOUTH HOLLAND | Officials with Thornton Township High School District 205 are preparing to pay tribute to the memory of a security guard who died last week while trying to break up a fight among two female students at Thornwood High School.
Glenn Harston, a spokesman for the high school district, said Saturday that all three schools in the district – Thornton in Harvey and Thornridge in Dolton, along with Thornwood – would have flags flown at half-staff Monday and would display special black bunting in memory of Richard Cowser.
Monday is the first day of classes at Thornwood since the incident. Classes were not in session Friday because of parent-teacher conferences.
There also will be special floral arrangements in place at all three high schools to pay tribute to Cowser, a 54-year-old Thornwood High School alumnus who worked as a security guard there.
Cowser was one of two guards who attempted to break up a fight Thursday afternoon between two female students. During the incident, Cowser hit his head against a student locker, and soon after began experiencing problems breathing, authorities said.
He was taken to Ingalls Memorial Hospital in Harvey, where he was pronounced dead on arrival.
The two girls were among several students interviewed by South Holland police, who are waiting for results from the Cook County medical examiner’s office before deciding if any kind of charges are warranted.
Harston said District 205 officials were waiting for action by police before deciding whether any kind of punishment, such as suspension, is warranted by the school board.
“Some type of response by the school will likely occur, but it is too early to say what that will be,” he said.
Funeral arrangements for Cowser have not yet been set, although Harston said school district officials have contacted his family to offer limited assistance, if desired.