Wednesday, October 17, 2012 , Updated 9:32 a.m., October 19, 2012
UPDATED: Frisco residents stunned as 12-year-old-boy found dead in home
The visitation is Friday morning.
FRISCO A Frisco community is mourning the death of a 12-year-old boy who was found dead in his home Monday afternoon.
Ethan Empey, who attended Griffin Middle School, was found by a family member late Monday, a Frisco Police Department spokesman confirmed Tuesday afternoon. A police investigation of the death is currently in progress.
Members of the community where Empey lived said the 6th grader was a talented football player who loved joking around.
John Steinbeck, a parent in the community, said Empey had many friends in the school and was well-liked by his classmates.
"Some parents took their children out of school," John Steinbeck said. "These kids are distraught; they just found out one of their best friends has died. My family has been friends with him for a long time -- he mowed my lawn."
Steinbeck added that the boy was polite and enjoyable to be around. "It's extremely sad, because he was such a great kid," he said.
Students across Frisco ISD campuses wore blue on Wednesday in memory of Empey, and a vigil was held that afternoon in Frisco's Crescent Park.
A parent who requested not to be identified said she remembered Empey as someone she couldn't help but love and added that Empey was like a member of her family.
"Nobody that met him didn't like him -- he was just one of those kids everybody loved," she said. "He was a lighthearted, happy kid. If you go up to Griffin it's like a ghost town; everybody's mourning him."
The woman said her son was struggling with the news because he was best friends with Empey.
"My son keeps wondering how he's going to go to school without his best friend," she said. "Everybody's just heartbroken -- it's every parent's worst nightmare. The parents are sad, the kids are sad, everybody. It's heartbreaking."
While community members may speculate why Empey died, the woman said such questions will probably never be answered.
"The focus right now needs to be on Ethan's life and what a fantastic kid he was," she said. "We may never know why this happened. We're just not going to get those answers. This is an opportunity to teach our children how to deal with life's stresses. It's time for us to unite as a community and be there for our children."
A visitation will be held Friday from 9 to 10:30 a.m. at LDS Church in Frisco, located at 11000 Eldorado Parkway. Funeral services will follow at 11 a.m.
Griffin Middle School classes will continue as scheduled, a Frisco ISD spokeswoman said, although counselors will be available for students who need them.
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