The body of IU student Kelly Hackendahl was found dead in a Bloomington sorority house on Thursday night, according to this news report. Police do not suspect foul play — for now — which indicates any number of potential causes behind the coed’s death. Kelly was reportedly studying for an education degree, and was a member of the Zeta Tau Alpha sorority. Few details exist in this case (so far), but it should be noted that Indiana University is no stranger to deaths and disappearances surrounding their female students, with it being the school attended by missing woman Lauren Spierer.
The party culture that hovers over IU and the Bloomington, Indiana region has long been under the scope of scrutiny, because many students have indeed died while attending this school. This student died while partying and trying to get up on a shelf (for some reason). Instead of doing a fun party move on a shelf, she ended up plunging to her death over a balcony. Another student by the name of Rachael Fiege fell down the stairs and died at an alcohol-fueled party, and her friends partied for at least seven hours without assisting her because they thought she was “sleeping.” A young man named Brian Macken was found unresponsive in a frat house where he was not a pledge, and he later died. This was in 2011 ( just a few months before the mysterious disappearance of Lauren Spierer).
Even without the scrutiny over the party culture that surrounds IU (and the unsolved disappearances of young women), there have also been murders. Jill Behrman was a student at IU in 2000 when she was murdered by John Myers. In 2011 an IU student named Dustin McCowan was arrested and charged with the murder of Amanda Bach (an Indiana woman who was shot dead in another town).
How does Kelly Hackendahl’s death compare to these many IU student deaths? It probably doesn’t directly — depending on her cause of death. This tragic passing is a mystery for now, but officials say no foul play is apparent. That could mean she either suffered a medical emergency of sorts, or she could have committed suicide. Drug overdose is also not out of the question until a cause of death is released and confirmed. This is a tragedy all the way around.