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Remembering Alliy

About 2,000 people gathered at a Danville church Wednesday to mourn the loss of 15-year-old Allison "Alliy" Bayliss, who authorities say jumped to her death from the Golden Gate Bridge on Monday morning.

Two days after Alliy Bayliss was last seen at school, authorities announced what so many of her classmates hoped they'd never hear: .

Jaclyn Capie, 15, was among the first to find out.

The San Ramon Valley High School sophomore was in P.E. class when she was taken into the principal's office with a handful of other students and teachers.

"I was in total shock," Jaclyn said between sobs.

She joined about 2,000 others Wednesday night for a candlelight vigil in Alliy's honor. She considered Alliy a good friend.

What the Danville community had planned as a show of support to bring Alliy home safe became a solemn memorial after authorities announced earlier in the day that the sophomore had jumped to her death from the Golden Gate Bridge Monday morning.

As more than 48 hours of searching came to an end, the reality of the loss began to sink in.

"Our heart goes out to the family," said Laura Barnes Coney, pastor of the , where the vigil was held.

Alliy's family stayed home. But hundreds of others, many of whom had never met Alliy, joined the congregation in prayer.

Teammates from Alliy's swim team — the Crow Canyon Country Club Sharks — lit candles in her memory. Friends sobbed in each other's arms. Many of them wore blue, Ailly's favorite color.

"She was an amazing swimmer, she loved it, she broke records all the time," said Patrick Mulholland, 13, who attends with Alliy's  sister. "Everyone looked up to her."

Those who knew Alliy described her as a role model, quiet but friendly. She played piano and posted videos of her instrumental pop renditions on YouTube.

She got along with her parents and three siblings, friends said. She was generous and kind. She played with younger kids in her neighborhood.

She was a high achiever at school. She held a 4.0 GPA, broke records as a swimmer and trained with other runners.

"She would always try her best — at everything," said Amanda Diehl, 13, a Charlotte Wood student who lives near the Bayliss family.

Her suicide was unexpected, several people said, including Jaclyn, who has known Alliy for years.

"She would brighten your day, she was optimistic," Jaclyn said, fighting back tears.

"I don't know why she ran away," Patrick said. "When we found out she left, my entire family just stopped what we were doing and sat down on the couch and just stayed there for, like, an hour."

Alliy was last seen at San Ramon Valley High around 8 a.m. Monday. When she didn't come home later in the day, her parents reported her missing, and police said immediately that they believed she was at risk of harming herself and that a criminal situation was not likely.

Dozens of community members began searching immediately. After Alliy's father found directions to San Francisco on her computer, early Tuesday morning the search moved to San Francisco, where Alliy's bike was found in a parking lot near the bridge.

Patrick's parents joined the , Patrick said.

Then on Wednesday, when authorities announced that evidence showed Alliy walking onto the Golden Gate Bridge but never coming off of it, the search turned into turned into a water recovery effort, and the news began to spread.

"I was in class when I found out," Patrick said. "The whole class just stopped —everyone got quiet."

Taylor Wood, 16,  had known Alliy since middle school. When he heard of her disappearance Monday morning, his first thought was that she went somewhere alone to listen to music.

"Music is what impacts all of us," he said. "I thought she was by herself with her music, maybe because that's what I would have done."

If only Alliy could have seen how many people care, Taylor said.

"Look at how many people showed up tonight," he said, gesturing to the crowds gathered outside the church. "To quote the Beatles, 'All you need is love,' and that's what we have here tonight."

Kari Hulac May 27, 2011 at 03:07 PM
If you click on the live links in the article, they will take you to two other articles that explain the news. this story is just about the memorial service.
Susan Briggs May 27, 2011 at 03:41 PM
Well said, Ron. Right on the money.
Dan May 27, 2011 at 06:07 PM
Yohan Goradian...you’re a moron. You’re going to make the judgment call concerning this girl’s life and wrap up the conclusion due to wealth? You’re truly a shallow and un-inspired individual. Perhaps a more appropriate posting would be of condolences and spiritual thought for the family. Help them deal with their loss, not throw sand in their face.
David May 27, 2011 at 11:59 PM
To DJCO..what a horrible person you are and what a terrible thing to say. People and attitudes such as yours are the reason the attendence in the catholic church has dropped drastically. Look it up if you don't believe me. Kids and young adults have no interest in being told the sort of hateful and fearful threats you tell them. People today are smarter then that. Go peddle your fear mongering to the old crusty people who still have the dear of god in them. Your way of thinking is neither correct nor wanted. People like you did a great job of turning me against religion even though I was brought up catholic. Good job.
David May 28, 2011 at 12:11 AM
Pam...let's see, her bike was by the bridge, she is missing and they found suicide notes. I'd say suicide is a reasonable conclusion to draw from all that. Horrible, but understandable why they say it.

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