EL CAJON, Calif. (KGTV) -- A little over three years ago, Granite Hills High School was devastated by the deaths of two beloved students, just three weeks a part. But the school turned the tragedy into a tradition of love and kindness.
William Burton and Trevor Barnes weren't just student athletes at Granite Hills, they were unique personalities that fellow students loved and gravitated towards.
"William did a lot as we found out, he did a lot of acts of kindness that were hidden. He didn't need to show it off at all. As for Trevor, he was very funny and goofy and I just loved him," says 2018 graduate Haylee Arsenault.
And when both unexpectedly passed away, heartbreak engulfed the campus.
"It was almost too hard to come to school for everyone, as people were very upset. So as an ASB class, we decided we needed to do something to lift up the environment."
True to her word, Haylee and the Associated Student Body (ASB) did just that, as they started an on campus tradition simply called B-Loved.
"We wanted to spread signs and posters around campus that would tell students that they were loved, and we also had guest speakers talk about kindness."
As it turned out, it became a huge part of the healing process and the students really took to it.
"it was something that I think everyone needed during that time, and it lifted up the mood for sure. You saw everyone just giving more hugs and spreading more love."
After Haylee graduated in 2018, Granites Hills Junior Grace Grosnall took over the reigns and has kept the tradition going even in a time of COVID-19
"We usually have an assembly every year, but this year we couldn't. We do make sure we let the freshman know it's not all about loving each other, it's also about kindness and reaching out to people that you may not know,"
The B Iin B-Loved stands for Burton and Barnes, with one important message
"Emphasizing that you have to be kind and remind people that you love them."