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Mass. teacher allegedly killed by student remembered for inspiring students, comforting others

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Danvers High School teacher Colleen Ritzeris seen in this undated photo provided by the family of Ritzer. Fourteen-year-old high school student Philip Chism was accused of killing Ritzer, a well-liked math teacher at Danvers High School, in Danvers, Mass., whose body was found in the woods behind the school. Law enforcement officials recovered the remains of 24-year-old Ritzer early Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2013, Essex District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett said. Chism was arraigned Wednesday in Salem on a murder charge and ordered held without bail. (AP Photo/Courtesy of Dale Webster via the Lawrence Eagle-Tribune) (The Associated Press)

A relative eulogizing a Massachusetts teacher allegedly killed by a student last week says she made people feel loved, comforted and optimistic.

Hundreds of people, included about 400 students who arrived in buses, said goodbye Monday to 24-year-old Colleen Ritzer, who taught math at Danvers High School. St. Augustine Church in her hometown of Andover was filled to capacity for her funeral Mass.

Ritzer's cousin Gina McDaniel spoke of her in a prepared eulogy. She says Ritzer made many students enthusiastic about math, even those who did not like the subject at first.

Police say Ritzer was killed in a school bathroom after dismissal Tuesday. Her body was found in woods behind the school. One of her students, 14-year-old Philip Chism, has pleaded not guilty to a murder charge.

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