Better word choice needed

Re: the article on the front page of the 7-16 edition that says “Loved by all: Students remember SLAIN classmate at balloon release.”

Is the use of the word “slain” purposefully inflammatory or does no one know the meaning of the word slay or slain? The article goes on to say the girl was killed in a car wreck. I am very sorry for her family and friends in her loss, but “slain”?

Merriam Webster dictionary defines slain as “past participle of slay. 1 transitive : to kill violently, wantonly, or in great numbers slay the enemy....” How does that fit this article unless it is saying the driver intentionally wrecked the vehicle “slaying” the student in the back seat.

Harold Coburn, Deberry resident