REVERE — Officials at the Lynn elementary school where Vanessa MacCormack taught for five years remembered the 30-year-old teacher, found dead in her home Saturday, as a talented, passionate, and kind educator.
The principal of William P. Connery Elementary School, Mary Dill, said Sunday that the “school community is heartbroken.”
MacCormack, who worked in Lynn’s School Department for seven years, including five at the Connery school, was found unresponsive by Revere police and emergency medical personnel arriving at her 93 Grand View Ave. home just after 3:30 Saturday afternoon, according to Jake Wark, a Suffolk district attorney spokesman.
The body bore signs of trauma, Wark said, but did not elaborate on how she died. The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner will determine the cause of MacCormack’s death, according to Wark.
MacCormack was the mother of a child who also lived in the house, he said. That child was not at home when police arrived Saturday, responding to a 911 call, and is now in the custody of family members, Wark said.
No arrests had been made as of Sunday evening, according to Wark.
MacCormack, who taught second grade at the Connery school, was loved by students, parents and colleagues, Dill said in a statement.
“She was involved in every aspect of the school and a great friend to everyone on the staff. She will be dearly missed,” she said.
Donna Coppola, a member of Lynn’s School Committee, described the staff as “devastated” by MacCormack’s death.
She said the district would provide grief counselors for students and staff at the school Monday and through the week.
The district’s superintendent, Catherine C. Latham, expressed sympathy to MacCormack’s family, friends, and colleagues in a statement.
“She was a talented, dedicated, and passionate educator and a loyal, kind, and compassionate friend and colleague,” said Latham.
At the scene Sunday morning, police tape was stretched across the front yard of MacCormack’s home, with a Revere police cruiser parked in the driveway.
Shortly before noon, at least four plainclothes officers wearing badges could be seen walking in and out of the house. One of the officers walked around the neighborhood knocking on doors and speaking to at least two residents.
“While the facts and circumstances do not immediately suggest a random incident, authorities said the investigation is still in its early stages,” said a statement from the district attorney’s office.
MacCormack purchased the yellow ranch-style home with neatly mowed lawns and a large deck in October 2015 with two other people, according to Revere city assessor records.
MacCormack’s death came as a shock, said neighbor Betty Cuoto, 47, who has lived in Revere 20 years, including a year on Grand View Avenue.
When she arrived home at 7 p.m. Saturday, she said Revere police had much of the street blocked off and it stayed that way until early Sunday morning.
“It’s a perfect neighborhood,” she said. “We’ve never had a problem.”
Sheryl Nicolas, 32, who just moved to the neighborhood in July, described it as a quiet street where “everyone is friendly.”
The death did not change her attitude toward the neighborhood, she said, and she felt neighbors were not in danger.
“I feel sorry for the family, but I feel safe,” she said.
A neighbor named Daniel who declined to give his last name said his family was celebrating his son’s 11th birthday in their backyard Saturday afternoon when police arrived in the neighborhood and began asking residents questions.
He didn’t know anyone living in the house where MacCormack’s body was found, but was shaken to learn that a death had occurred so close to him.
“You are celebrating someone’s life, and then someone’s life, as I understand it, was taken away from them,” he said.
A neighbor who gave her name as Sarah said she remained concerned, despite a visible police presence Sunday. But she believed the neighborhood would pull together.
“This is a strong community, I love this community,” she said. “If someone speaks up, hopefully they’ll find the person who did this.”
Authorities are asking for the public’s help as they investigate.
Anyone with information about the death, or who was in the area yesterday, is asked to contact Revere Police at 781-286-8340 or State Police at 617-727-8817. Any observation of people, vehicles, or activity could be helpful, the statement said.
John Hilliard can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.