Six months ago, IU student Lauren Spierer disappeared, leaving behind her shoes, purse and cell phone.
The three items were among the few clues police first discovered in the case.
But there are things Lauren left behind that can’t be filed away inside an evidence locker. Things like a family, a circle of friends and a community of more than 80,000 who, 183 days later, are still wondering what could have happened.
The University has helped in any way it could, IU Dean of Students Harold “Pete” Goldsmith said. Awareness events were planned and a $50,000 fund was created to help defray costs of the search.
But now, Goldsmith said, the money has essentially run dry.
“There may be a few hundred dollars in it, but it’s depleted,” he said, noting there are no plans to add more money to the fund.
Goldsmith said there are also no current plans for any University-sponsored events, but he remains in regular contact with Lauren’s parents, Charlene and Robert Spierer.
“They let me know what’s going on, and I let them know what’s going on,” he said.
Other campus assistance has come in the form of Rabbi Sue Silberberg and the IU Helene G. Simon Hillel Center. Silberberg is the director of Hillel.
She helped organize many of the large volunteer searches, and the Hillel Center created a fund for people to donate money. The fund is still accepting donations, Silberberg said.
Though Silberberg said the Spierers are no longer staying in Bloomington, the center remains in touch with them and offers support whenever the family comes to town.
“It’s very sad she still hasn’t been found after all this time,” Silberberg said. “We just really still hope someone will come forward. The Spierers are wonderful people, and it’s been so painful.”
The story of what occurred in the early morning hours of June 3 has been told and retold by police officers, newspapers and news broadcasts.
Read the rest of this story at the Indiana Daily Student.