The University of Virginia community is mourning the death of a second-year student.
Shelley Goldsmith - from Abingdon - died Saturday evening in a Washington D.C. hospital. She earned selection as a Jefferson scholar - one of only 117 current students to receive full tuition for four years to attend UVA. The university says Goldsmith was visiting the city with friends from UVA. There is no word on what caused her death.
The Beta Bridge is painted with the message "Shelley our Shooting Star". Friends and students passing by are writing their condolences. Goldsmith was a member of Alpha Phi sorority. She worked at Boylan Heights on the Corner. Even students who did not know Goldsmith personally say they feel a loss.
"It's really sort of jarring to think that some one who is in our university can just...just passes away, really so recently when the school year just started, is kind of like a wake up call that bad things happen and can happen to us too," Varun Kulkarni, a second-year UVA student.
An email sent Sunday to students and faculty from the university's chief student affairs officer reads - in part - "Our thoughts are with Shelley's family, friends and sorority sisters at this difficult time." The university is offering counseling and support to students most affected by Goldsmith's death. Funeral arrangements have not yet been set.
Goldsmith's death is the second sudden loss of a member of the Alpha Phi sorority in less than a year. Casey Schulman died in December while taking part in UVA's Semester at Sea program. The fourth year student from Washington D.C. was killed when she was hit by a propeller from a dive boat in Dominica. The boat's operator and owner were charged in connecting with her death.
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