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Honoring Jayla

RESERVE – Recent East St. John High School honors graduate Jayla Tassin’s family vacation to a Florida beach changed to a battle for her life in the ICU. According to her loved ones, Jayla was in the water when she walked across a hole, causing her to sink. A wave crashed over her at the same time and pushed her underwater.

“It happened quietly, and no one even saw,” said Benny Tassin, Jayla’s father. “We were all right there in the water with her. Jayla, an excellent swimmer, must have panicked and lost all of her ability to fight her way to the top of the water.”

Jayla, who had been in the ICU in a Florida hospital on life support since Wednesday, passed away on Monday. Jayla graduated in May with honors and a score of 30 on her ACT. She also participated on her school’s track team and was to attend the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in the fall. She is the daughter of Evan Nelson and Benny Tassin and the granddaughter of Peggy Joseph and Alma Bailey.

In a press release from St. John the Baptist parish, “Loving, beautiful, kind, warm spirited” are just some of the adjectives used to describe Jayla. She has left her mark on our community and St. John the Baptist Parish will always be Jayla’s home. She will never be forgotten.”