NIU holds vigil to remember Central Illinois natives killed in Aurora shooting

Local News

Candles lit Thursday night on Northern Illinois University’s campus remembering their own.

Clay Parks, a 2014 NIU College of Business graduate and Trevor Wehner, a senior also in the College of Business were both killed in last week’s Aurora shooting.

Parks handpicked Wehner for an internship at Henry Pratt Co. and the day of the shooting, was his first day.

 “I like to say they were cut from the same cloth and had some the same traits,” said Dr. Terry Bishop, Professor in the Department of Management. “I think that played a role in Clay selecting Trevor.”

 Professors remember Clay as a leader, and Trevor as someone who coul change a room with his smile.

“[Clay] was reaching back to give opportunities to our current students,” said Bishop. “I must say that [Trevor] made my life better with that smile, just that smile alone.”

The NIU community is still scarred from a 2008 shooting that left 5 students dead. Junior Ethan Hoffman said the university just gathered last Thursday to remember the 5 killed, nearly 24 hours later the Aurora shooting happened.

“Just the day before that was our anniversary so we had everyone outside doing a vigil,” said Hoffman. “No one ever thought the next day we’d be doing the same thing.”

The loss of Clay and Trevor, a reminder to Huskies to keep their classmates close.

 Hoffman said, “Outside of when tragedy hits we’re such a diverse community here at NIU with different backgrounds. When something happens everyone comes together.”

Wehner was laid to rest of Wednesday evening. Click here to learn Parks’ funeral arrangements.

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