Mourning the Loss of a University Student

To: Members of the University Community
From: Robert J. Zimmer, President, and Ka Yee C. Lee, Provost
Subject: Mourning the Loss of a University Student
Date: January 10, 2021

Last night, Eric Heath and Michele Rasmussen shared with our community the heartbreaking news that a current student at the University was shot and killed.

The student was Yiran Fan, a 30-year-old PhD student in a joint program of the Booth School of Business and the Kenneth C. Griffin Department of Economics. Yiran came from China to study in the United States, and he previously earned an MS degree from the University’s Financial Math program. He was in the 4th year of the Joint Program in Financial Economics, and was hoping to propose his dissertation later this year. His family in China has now been notified of this painful news, and University representatives are in contact to offer support as they mourn his death. The University will share more soon about Yiran’s life as well as memorial information once it is available.

We know that this shocking incident brings grief to our entire community and concern for the wellbeing and safety of others. The suspected assailant in this shooting was killed late yesterday by Evanston police. Our priorities at this time are to uphold the safety of our community, and to ensure that support is available for our colleagues and students who knew Yiran or will be otherwise affected. While these developments do not indicate an ongoing threat to our community, the University of Chicago Police Department will maintain its increased presence for the time being near the location of the shooting at 5035 S. East End Avenue.

This sudden and senseless loss of life causes us indescribable sorrow. In the days ahead we will come together as a community to mourn, and to lift up fellow members of our community in this difficult and very sad time. Please join us in wishing consolation and healing for our student’s loved ones.