Correction: An earlier version of this story misstated the circumstances in which Hannah Flaherty was found dead. There was no graduation party. This story has been updated to include more details.
A 14-year-old girl died unexpectedly from a suspected overdose at a home in Eustis last Tuesday, according to her mother and police.
Hannah Flaherty had been at her mother’s house on Main Street with a friend when she ingested a substance that she thought was cocaine but was likely pure fentanyl, said Sarah Taylor, her mother.
Three sheriffs’ deputies responded to a medical incident at 6:08 p.m. on June 14 at a house on Main Street, Franklin County Sheriff Scott Nichols said. The girl died by the time they responded, so the case was referred to the Maine State Police’s Major Crimes Unit, Nichols said.
The friend survived but Hannah did not. She had come from her father’s home in Portland with a friend to stay with Taylor, who said she was at work at the time of her daughter’s death and did not know how the drugs ended up in their possession.
Hannah, who had no history of drug use, was a straight-A student who loved to hike and attended Wavus Camp on Damariscotta Lake in Jefferson every summer, Taylor said.
She initially attended school in Eustis after Taylor moved there from Starks four years ago, but she found the school system too small. Hannah’s father agreed to let his daughter move in with him in Portland, where she had graduated from King Middle School the day before her passing, Taylor said.
Residents of Eustis responded with “an outpouring of support” and started a crowdfunding campaign to support the family and allow Taylor to temporarily stay home with Hannah’s siblings, who are 10 and 16.
“She was just such a vibrant human who positively affected everyone around her,” Taylor said of her daughter.