Family and community mourn death of murdered SUNY Brockport student
Posted at: 09/30/2012 6:52 PM
| Updated at: 10/01/2012 12:24 AM
By: Joangel Concepcion | WHEC.com
The brutal murder is on everyone's minds at the College of Brockport. But it's also affecting another community hours away.
The victim was from New Hartford. Friends and family are just as distraught and shocked over the vicious attack.
Shae Kallasy says, "My brother actually called me. Wondering if it was true. Then I called one of my best friends and she confirmed that it was."
It was supposed to be an exciting time in their lives. Shae Kallasy just graduated from New Hartford High School along with her best friend Alexandra Kogut.
"She really just was a very happy person," says Kallasy.
But now an act so brutal and vicious has left her with only memories of "her smile, the way she always liked to be involved in everything. She loved to be a part of everything that was going on and loved to take pictures and she just loved to capture everything she was doing."
Campus Police found the body of Alexandra Kogut beaten to death inside of a dorm room at McLean Hall early Saturday morning. The Monroe County Sheriff's Office says 21-year-old Clayton Whittemore was in a relationship with Kogut. He has been charged with 2nd degree murder.
The death has left this Brockport community in shock.
Counselors have made themselves available since the incident.
Libby Caruso, Director of Health and Counseling, says,"Just to help them get through this. Many of them haven't experienced a loss like this. Some of them have and at times it can be even worse for them."
Officials say several students are coming in for services, some for individual care, others gathering in groups to support each other.
Caruso says, "It's times like this when you really do feel that sense of community that in every day life you may not."
It's something counselors say is hard for these young minds to understand, but it's even more difficult for those who knew her best.
Shae Kallasy says, "It's really unreal because we've never had to deal with something like this."
The Health and Counseling department does not plan on making any changes to their programs when it comes to dating violence. They say this is something they already address year round.
They certainly hope this incident will increase awareness about the issue. However, school officials are offering additional counseling through out the week. Counselors have changed up their regular schedules to help more students grieve.
They will be talking with faculty and staff as well, so they can know how and when to refer students.
The school is also planning a remembrance ceremony on Monday night for students are faculty. It is scheduled to begin at 9.30 p.m. News10NBC should know where it will take place on the campus by Monday.