Unsmiling teen girl with dyed blonde hair

Claire Rivas

Claire Rivas was born March 19, 2003, to her parents Sarah and Thomas Rivas in Oxford, Mississippi. Her mom works as a physical therapist, and her dad is a cardiologist. She is the only child in her family.

The only child in her family, Claire lives with her parents in a large house with a swimming pool outside of Oxford in a gated community called Timberlake.

Claire has always excelled as a student, and as a senior, continues to be part of the honors program at Yoknapatawpha High School.

Claire’s teachers report that when she was younger, she was preppy and hung out with the popular kids. As she got older, she quit the cheerleading team and found a new group of friends who were goths. Her teachers remarked that even though she’s adopted the costume of all black clothing, her bubbly personality still shines through. Since her grades are still all A's, and she has never gotten into trouble, none of the YHS faculty or staff seemed concerned about Claire’s change of identity.

Some of her classmates described Claire and her friends as posers. Students report that she and her friends can often be seen driving around town in the new Acura that Claire's parents bought for her. Her peers' criticism never bothered Claire. She felt her goth friends were more authentic, reliable, and accepting. They were wholly uninterested in the car she drove, fancy or not. Claire had cut herself free of the shallowness of high school and loved the freedom that came with it.

Unfortunately, rumors began to swirl about drug use among Claire’s group, especially in reference to her close friends Keanu May and Mitch Freedman. As a result, she and her friends began to isolate themselves from their peers more and more, hanging out in small groups in the woods outside Claire’s house, listening to house and dubstep music, and getting up to Memphis to see concerts when they could.

In 2020, Claire, Keanu, and Mitch were serendipitous witnesses in an investigation that led to an arrest in a high-profile murder case. As a reward for coming forward with their information, a local activist organization, Concerned Oxford Parents (COP), awarded the teens $2,500. In keeping with her responsible nature, Claire invested her share of the money for future college tuition costs.

These days, Claire is focused on preparing her college applications for submission in the fall. Her nights are consumed with scholarship applications. She is determined to work in the field of biological oceanography, studying how invasive species impact the Gulf of Mexico.

 

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