Members of the WSU community have responded to the death of UI freshman Joseph Wiederrick by writing letters, expressing sympathy and encouraging safety.
Moscow Police found Wiederrick’s body at 4 p.m. on Monday under the Paradise Creek Bridge in Moscow, approximately five miles from Theophilus Tower, his dormitory. As of right now, authorities believe he died from hypothermia, according to reports.
“We are saddened by the loss,” the UI administration said in a statement released Tuesday. “Our heartfelt sympathy goes out to his family and friends.”
When Wiederrick, 18, failed to return to his dormitory Monday afternoon, his friend reported him missing.
According to authorities’ reports, Wiederrick left the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity house around 2 a.m. Monday. He then wandered to a house on Highland Drive and was found in the basement by the resident at 3 a.m. The resident asked him to leave, and he moved to another house where he was turned away.
At some point in the night, he called his roommate and said he was on his way home. But, Wiederrick never returned.
Jeff Carmody, WSU Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity president, said although Wiederrick was not an actual member of the fraternity at UI, Carmody and his chapter members plan on writing a letter to the UI Sigma Alpha Epsilon house to show their support.
“It’s something you never want to hear about happening.” Carmody said in response to the death.
Carmody said to his knowledge, the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity at UI is a dry establishment, which means drugs and alcohol are strictly prohibited.
“It’s very unfortunate and sad,” he said.
Wiederrick’s family and friends are in their prayers, Carmody said.
An incident this close to home is somewhat eye opening, said Abby Reinersten, Delta Gamma sorority president.
“We hope everyone at WSU and University of Idaho keeps their safety as a priority and looks out for themselves and their friends,” she said.
Kyle Erdman, ASWSU president, said he feels for the students, fraternity and all those affected at the UI campus.
“It just reminds us that we’re not as invincible as we think we are as students, and it’s really important that we don’t go through college in isolation,” he said.
According to the police you do not have to wait 24 hours in order to report someone missing. If you know that someone is gone, or there are suspicious circumstances surrounding the disappearance of an individual, the police said you should call 9-1-1.