PEEKSKILL, NY. -- Lenroy Stevens was a guidance counselor who always put his students first.
Stevens, a White Plains resident who was killed in a car accident on Route 9A in Briarcliff on Wednesday, worked at Peekskill High School as a guidance counselor. Before that, he worked at Lakeland High School where colleagues fondly remembered him.
"He was a gentleman in the truest sense of the word," Phil Kavanagh, district director of guidance and counseling for the Lakeland School District.
Kavanagh said Stevens is being mourned at Lakeland and in his time there, he touched a lot of students and teachers.
"He was always willing to go the extra mile for his students," Kavanagh said. "He listened to everyone. He was respectful and very smart."
At Lakeland, Stevens was described as relentless in making sure his students were able to obtain college scholarships.
"He developed close relationships with his students," Kavanagh said. "He put his students above all else."
The mourning over Stevens extends beyond the Lakeland and Peekskill communities, Kavanagh said.
"I know people who work for the county that are devastated," Kavanagh said. "The guidance community is feeling this loss. Emails have been going around recognizing this young man. This is a tremendous loss."
Stevens was someone who had a very positive life ahead of him, Kavanagh said.
"That's what makes this even more tragic and sad," Kavanagh said.
The mood at Lakeland has been somber since Stevens' death.
"People are shocked," Kavanagh said. "People have been coming forth with wonderful stories about him."
Kavanagh said Stevens' parents should be praised for the job they did raising him.
"It's a great example of how to raise a kid," Kavanagh said.
At Peekskill High School on Wednesday, May 14, district administrators and BOCES grief counselors met with high school staff to help them cope with Stevens' death.
The district said Stevens was a friend to many students and colleagues.
"We will all be keeping Lenroy and his family in our thoughts and prayers during this time," Laura Belfiore, communications specialist for the Peekskill City School District said.
Funeral arrangements have not been publicly announced.