Our campus community is deeply saddened by the tragic deaths of two of our students earlier this week: Javad Marshall-Fields, who graduated in May with a degree in speech communications, and Vivian Wolfe, a senior in food science and human nutrition. Both had participated in our Key Academic Community, and Javad was a member of the first Key Plus class and the President’s Leadership Program. He also was one of the first CSU students to receive a Community Civility Award from the City of Fort Collins for his volunteer efforts in support of his neighbors.
I was not close to Vivian and Javad, as I know so many on our campus were, but this morning I’ve learned a great deal about the kind of people they were and the mark they made on this institution. I’ve been told how hard they worked to overcome any challenges in their lives, and how warmly they embraced the people around them. Both placed great importance on the opportunity they had to earn an education at CSU – and they strived to take advantage of all the University had to offer. Many were inspired by their vitality and determination to make a difference in the community and in the lives of others. One staff member described them as ambitious – not in their pursuit of personal gain, but in their commitment to make themselves and others proud of their lives and achievements.
Javad and Vivian meant a great deal to Colorado State University, and they will be remembered with warmth, tenderness and sincere respect for what they gave to this institution and to the people with whom they lived, worked and studied.
We do not yet have information about what types of memorial services may be planned, but I have asked that the Colorado State University flags be lowered to half-staff in their honor. I also know that many of you who were close to Vivian and Javad are away from campus this summer, but please know that our Counseling Center is available to offer support even if you are out of town. Just call the center at (970) 491-6053 and they will assist you.
As soon as we have information, we will let you know how best to communicate your thoughts and prayers to Javad and Vivian’s families. They are certainly in our hearts at this difficult time.
Larry Edward Penley