The exciting start of school at Sacred Heart University was plagued with sadness after a student was hit by a car while crossing the street on Friday around 12:30 p.m.
“It's kind of like somber and it's an awful way to start off the year. I mean, anything like this is awful but just at the beginning of the year it's taking a toll on people,” said Katherine Paris, who participated in a campus band with the accident victim, Kaitlyn Doorhy.
Bridgeport Police said a driver swerved to avoid Doorhy’s friend on Madison Avenue and instead collided with her.
Pictures from Sacred Heart’s Flickr account show hundreds at a candlelight vigil Friday night, praying for the Junior's recovery.
“You can tell that there's a huge sense of community at the school by how everyone's been bonding together over this tragedy,” said Emily Cusick, a sophomore who also participated in band with Doorhy.
“It was really hard to watch some people that really knew her really well. They were pretty destroyed,” said Cody Lerner, of fellow students at the vigil.
On Saturday morning, hospital officials confirmed Doorhy, 20, died from her injuries. She was an alto saxophone player and an aspiring attorney, according to an email sent to students by John Petillo, president of Sacred Heart University.
“I didn't know her for too long, but when I talked to her, she was always happy. She was so nice and it's just awful what happened,” said Lindsay Scuoteguazza, a sophomore and band member.
Doorhy was an organ donor, according to Lucinda Ames, communications coordinator for St. Vincent Medical Center. A Donate Life flag will be flown in honor of her transplant gift.
Back on campus, people said the Kappa Delta sister leaves another legacy: her infectious spirit.
“I’m also in Greek life so I've seen her around a lot. She was a really sweet girl,” said Paris.
“She was beautiful. No other way really to describe it. She was gorgeous and her personality was just as beautiful,” said Cusick.
Petillo’s email said counseling services were available on campus on Saturday.
A tweet from the Sacred Heart University account said a mass will be held at the Chapel of the Holy Spirit on Sunday at 7 p.m. The liturgy will be dedicated to Doorhy.
Meanwhile, police said they continue to investigate the accident. They haven't filed any charges as of Saturday night.