Community Grapples With Suicide of Local Teen

Aaron Selbig


     Students, parents and administrators at Homer High School received the tragic message Monday that one of their own was gone. Seventeen-year-old Cody Devaney died Sunday in what Alaska State Troopers are calling an apparent suicide. 

     In an email to KBBI News Monday, Alaska State Trooper spokesperson Megan Peters said Devaney's death appeared to be the result of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Troopers responded to the call Sunday night, just after 8 p.m. and Devaney was pronounced dead at South Peninsula Hospital at 8:30.

     Devaney attended Homer High School for his freshman and sophomore years but in this – his junior year – he transferred over to the Connections Homeschool Program.

     In a recorded message that went out to parents Monday morning, Homer High School Principal Dr. Allen Gee said that “our thoughts and prayers are with the family in this tough time.” He said the whole school was in mourning Monday.

     "Our counselors will be here for the next few days to provide support for our styiudents and our staff," said Gee.

     Gee said the Homer High campus was a very somber place Monday.

     Cody Devaney was a soccer player in his time at Homer High School. He also spent quite a bit of time engaged in the Devaney family hobby of racing automobiles. 

     An article in the Peninsula Clarion just a month ago features a photo of Devaney with his brothers, Kyle and Dean, his father Darren and his grandfather, Mike Devaney. The article showcases the Devaney family’s love of racing Chevy Camaros at Twin City raceway in Kenai and says that Cody – driving a car he helped build with his brothers and his dad – won all three races he competed in.

     Dr. Gee says Homer High School had already scheduled an unrelated community meeting – to deal with the subject of bullying and off-campus behavior – but he would now like to also provide a forum for the community to remember Devaney and work through the grief process. That meeting is scheduled for Thursday night at 7 p.m. in the Mariner Theatre.