University encourages counseling services after the sudden loss of a student

By LYNDSAY MACH, Western Courier Editor-In-Chief 

MACOMB, Illinois – A wellness check was conducted on a student at 3:10 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 7, according to the Western Illinois’ Office of Public Safety. When the officers arrived, the student was unresponsive. The student was pronounced deceased by the McDonough County Coroner at 3:33 p.m.

The death is under investigation by the Office of Public Safety and the McDonough County Coroner’s Office, according to Derek Watts, the director of the office of public safety. No foul play is indicated. The initial investigation indicated that the student died by suicide, according to a release from Western Illinois University.

A release was sent out at 5:28 p.m. on Feb. 7 where a statement from WIU President Guiyou Huang said, “We are incredibly saddened by the sudden loss of one of our students. Our University counseling staff members are available for any University community member who wishes assistance. For any student struggling, please know you are not alone. We have people here who will help you.”

WIU students have been sharing a graphic via social media with numbers to call if anyone needs help. Students can reach out to the University Counseling Center at 309-298-2453, as well as call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-TALK (8255) or dial 988. The University Counseling Center takes walk-ins and appointments. It is located on the first floor of Memorial Hall.


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