Community mourning the loss of beloved teacher and friend killed by alligator

Cassandra Cline was killed while walking her dog after an alligator attacked her in South Carolina. She was a kindergarten teacher in the Union-Endicott Central School District.

Friends and former students are simply heartbroken over the sudden, shocking death of a kindergarten teacher from the Binghamton area.

Cassandra Cline was attacked by an alligator while on vacation in South Carolina.

The first day of school just won't be the same at the Union-Endicott School District as the teachers and students have lost a beloved kindergarten teacher, serving this district for over 15 years.

"We are all just still grappling with it and I can't imagine what her family's going through," Union-Endicott School District Superintendent Dr. Suzanne McLeod said.

Superintendent McLeod says this community is shaken up after Cassandra Cline was violently killed in the alligator attack.

"She was the sweetest, kindest, most wonderful person. You cannot imagine a more perfect person to teach kindergartners than Cassi," Mcleod said.

For 16 years, she worked with the area's youngest at school, but she was loved outside the classroom too.

Village Mayor John Bertoni describes her as a beautiful person, and was always smiling.

"This is one of those things that you never would imagine, you never would accept as reality, and but it is and this community certainly shares in this grief," he explained.

Superintendent McLeod says it still hasn't hit her that two weeks from now, she won't be walking the halls here.

"She would be back with us in two weeks with our babies coming in," McLeod said, "Everybody remembers their kindergarten teacher. Well, she is that kindergarten teacher."

The Union-Endicott Central School District released the following statement on Cline's death:

"The U-E School District is saddened by the tragic passing of Cassandra Cline, a kindergarten teacher in the district for 16 years. Cassi was a dedicated teacher, working with our youngest students in their first year of school. She was a sweet, kind individual who was respected by her colleagues and loved by her students and their families. She will be greatly missed by all who knew her. Our sincere condolences go out to her family, friends and all who had the pleasure of knowing and working with her."

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