Letting them know that a community's loss is a loss felt by all.
"This was the most important day as an educator because our kids need us more today than they ever have," said Marc Eckmann.
Belvidere north principal Marc Cckmann will never forget this day-- three days after his students Brenda Guiterrez and Thalia Arrendondo died in a car accident. But support came in a shade of black-- worn by students and teachers throughout the Stateline.
The movement started with a Facebook post, and quickly drew in 20,000 people.
Boylan Catholic High School is one of the schools which reached out. Principal Rev. Paul M. Lipinski says the grief surrounding the girls' deaths reached well beyond the city of Belvidere's boundaries.
Principal Eckmann says this school day was tough, but powerful.
"Life is so fragile and unpredictable," Eckmann adds.