EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Merrimack Valley

May 8, 2013

Salem State University to celebrate life of slain MIT police officer

SALEM — The Salem State University community will gather Monday to remember 2009 graduate Sean Collier.

Collier, a campus police officer at MIT, was killed in the line of duty April 18, allegedly at the hands of Boston Marathon bombing suspects Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.

On Monday, several of Collier’s classmates and professors will speak about the criminal justice major and the impact he had at Salem State. The ceremony will begin at 4:30 p.m. on the lawn next to the campus police station on Loring Avenue.

Collier is remembered on campus as a friendly, caring and selfless person, who looked out for others, said Karen Cady, a spokeswoman for Salem State.

“Everyone loved him,” she said. “Right from the moment we learned of his death, the university wanted to honor him in some way, especially many of the faculty that worked so closely with him and were so fond of him.”

Carol Facella, a criminal justice professor at Salem State, described Collier as a “person of high diligence and maturity well beyond his years. ... If I were to have predicted one student who would spend a lifetime of exemplary service and making extraordinary contributions to law enforcement, it would have been Sean Collier.”

Collier was buried at Puritan Lawn Cemetery in Peabody in a private ceremony April 24. Monday will be Salem State’s first chance to come together and remember the 26 year-old grad, said Cady.

The university has established a scholarship in Collier’s honor, to be given annually to a Salem State student studying criminal justice.

On Monday, a university color guard will open the proceedings, President Patricia Meservey will speak and Collier’s classmates, friends and criminal justice faculty will give reflections.

The gathering is meant to celebrate Collier’s life, Cady said. The event was scheduled to coincide with the start of a national Police Appreciation Week.

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