University Statements


University extends condolences on death of student

Oct. 29, 2009

Susan Murphy, vice president for student and academic services, today issued the following message to the Cornell community:

It is with heartfelt regret that I have to announce the death of former architecture student Rion Wight '09. Rion died unexpectedly yesterday in Cayuga County.

Rion joined the undergraduate architecture program in fall 2005, and although he had been on leave for the past two years, he still had many friends among the faculty, staff and students. A community support meeting will be held tomorrow, Friday, at 5 p.m. in East Sibley Room 157.

The death of a student affects the entire Cornell community, and I know that all of us send our deepest expressions of sympathy to Rion's parents, family and friends.

Rion's passing is made even more painful for us in that it follows so closely the death of Boon Jim Lim '13 of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, a freshman in the College of Arts and Sciences. The student was found dead in his Clara Dickson Hall room in the early hours of October 19.

May we all pause a moment from our daily pressures to give thanks for the lives of Boon and Rion and the vitality they each brought to our community. May we forever find ways to keep our memories of them alive.

This has, indeed, been a semester of great sadness for all of us. In September, we lost Warren J. Schor '11 of Clinton Corners, N.Y., who died of complications related to H1N1 influenza; and just as school was getting under way in August, David Yang '11 of Hillsborough, N.J., died in a car accident in Missouri.

Each of these losses reminds us about how precious, and sometimes fleeting, life can be. They also remind us of the importance of reaching out to one another to offer strength and support and to seek help when needed.

President David Skorton joins me in expressing our deepest condolences to all the families and friends who have been so tragically affected.