Message from the President: The Passing of Kaitlyn Doorhy '16

News Story: August 23, 2014

Dear students, friends and faculty,

It is with a heavy heart that I share news just issued this afternoon by St. Vincent's Medical Center that Kaitlyn Doorhy has passed away as a result of the injuries she sustained when she was struck by a motor vehicle yesterday. Last night, more than 700 people gathered in the quad, along with Kaitlyn’s parents, for a candlelight vigil—offering up love and prayers and coming together as our community always does, good times or bad. I know your love and support meant a great deal to the Doorhys and will continue to in the coming days and weeks.

I was unable to attend last night’s vigil, as I was dropping off my own daughter for her sophomore year of college. As you can imagine, my thoughts have been a jumble of love for her and sorrow for Kaitlyn’s family and friends and for the loss of such a vibrant member of our community. I am thinking of the members of the class of 2018 who are moving in this weekend and hearing this sad news on a day that should be all about excitement and expectations. And I am grateful to all of you on the “Welcome Weekend crew” who are ensuring a great experience for them even as your own hearts are breaking. You can view photographs from the vigil here.

I am on my way back to campus now and am anxious to be with all of you during this bittersweet time. I think it is important that we continue to celebrate the beginning of a new academic year even as we grieve for the loss of Kaitlyn. Everything I have heard about Kaitlyn—her caring for others, her dreams to be an attorney, the way she embraced life—tells me that she would expect this from us.

I want to remind you that counseling services are available today through the Wellness Center in HC-108 for any students, faculty and staff who would like to take advantage of them.

We will have a memorial mass for Kaitlyn next week and will share the details as soon as they are in place. In the meantime, I ask that you continue to pray for Kaitlyn and her family and that you take care of one another.


John J. Petillo, Ph.D.

You can read Kaitlyn's obituary here.