Friends gathered in the Otto M. Budig Theater Feb. 1 to remember Mahesh Subramannian, an international student who was found dead Jan. 20.
“This memorial was a good thing because it was a good way for the campus family to remember him,” said Northern Kentucky University alumnus Emily Kleane.
The service was organized so those who could not attend the private memorial in Fairfield, Ohio could have an opportunity to mourn Subramannian together.
Muzammil Nadir, junior business informatics major and president of the International Student Union, spoke at the memorial, reminiscing about meeting and playing cricket with Subramannian.
“He was a great guy. He respected me for being both an international student and a foreigner in this country,” Nadir said. “It was shocking when I found out he had died. I don’t have words to express how I felt.”
Nadir added that Subramannian hadn’t seen his family in India for almost four years.
“He missed them, but felt he couldn’t go back because he needed to commit to his studies,” Nadir said.
Knowing that he hadn’t been home in so long prompted the ISU to start a scrapbook to send to Subramanniam’s family to India.
“We wanted to do something for his family,” said junior criminal justice major Tsvety Karaivanova. “We want to be able to send this to India, so it needed to be something nice.”
Because every country has its own way of remembering those who have died, the ISU members decided an American scrapbook would be a good way to ensure Subramannian’s family that people in America cared about him.
The scrapbook will be in the Office of International Student Affairs, University Center room 366, for at least a week. Students, faculty, staff and friends of Subramannian are encouraged to stop by and contribute either a memory, a photograph or just their name.
“Parents send their kids here to get an education and to make a better life,” Karaivanova said. “We want to make sure that Mahesh’s parents see that he wasn’t alone. He had friends and a family here. He was loved.”