Remembering Ruth George
Hundreds of students, staff, and alumni gathered at Student Center East Monday night to mourn the loss of Ruth George, a UIC Honors College & Applied Health Sciences student. The memorial began thirty minutes after the advertised time due to George's friends trying to honor her family’s wishes by dodging the gathered media. Those gathered for the vigil were directed to the Academic and Residential Complex (ARC) on Harrison St. After a minute of silence, Vigil organizers instructed the crowd to go to whichever sites they thought most appropriate to pay their respects to George. Vigil organizers passed out flowers, decorations, and candles. Most of the crowd journeyed from the ARC to the Halsted Street Parking Garage to pay their final respects at the site where George’s life was cut short.
George's close friends remember her as the kind of person who lights the room with her big smile and as someone who always took care of others. Even the last day that she was alive, George made sure that everyone arrived home safely, said one of the speakers. George was hurrying home so that her mom would not worry about her. George's cousin spoke on behalf of her family and hometown friends. She thanked everyone for showing support and shared George’s love of her pre-health fraternity.
Natalie Bennet, Women's Leadership & Resource Center director recited a poem in George's memory. Bennet shared that she had helped organize an event about violence against women of color with George a couple of weeks earlier.
At around 8:50 PM students were lead in prayer. Shortly after saying Amen, those in attendance blew out their candles together.
A smaller memorial was held earlier Monday Morning at 10 AM. About 150 students and staff in the UIC Honors College and the UIC College of Applied Health Sciences gathered in memory of George in the Illinois Room of Student Center East.
At 11 AM on Saturday morning, Ruth George’s family reported to the UIC Police that they had not heard from George since the evening of Nov. 22. Her phone was tracked to the Halsted Street Parking Garage where UIC Police and family members found George unresponsive in the back seat of a vehicle owned by her family. UIC Police announced that at 4:45 PM on Monday, Nov. 25, Donald D. Thurman, 26, was officially charged with first-degree murder and aggravated sexual assault for the killing of George.