University of Utah Student-Athlete Killed

In a letter from the university president, the University of Utah announced that student-athlete Lauren McCluskey of Pullman, Washington, was killed Monday night.

McCluskey was a 21-year-old senior majoring in communication who participated in track and field for the University of Utah.

The man who police said killed McCluskey, Melvin Rowland, turned a gun on himself early Tuesday morning, committing suicide at Trinity African Methodist Episcopal Church, according to KSL.

In a statement to the community, University of Utah President Ruth Watkins said, “It is with tremendous sadness that I share the news that Lauren McCluskey, an accomplished student-athlete who came to the University of Utah from Pullman, Washington, was killed Monday night on our campus. We have canceled day and evening classes for Tuesday, Oct. 23, to allow our campus community to grieve the senseless loss of this bright, young woman. We have made our counseling and support services available to students, staff and faculty.”

Two vigils have been scheduled in Lauren’s honor, one at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 24, at the Trinity African Methodist Episcopal Church, 239 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Salt Lake City; and another at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 25, on the steps of the Park Building on the University of Utah campus, 201 Presidents Circle, Salt Lake City.

Students of Southern Utah University are encouraged to wear red in a sign of support for University of Utah students, faculty, staff and family.

Photography Courtesy of: The University of Utah