YPSILANTI, Mich. (WXYZ) - Dozens of people came together Friday night as a school, as friends, and as family, to remember and pray for Eastern Michigan University student Julia Niswender found dead Tuesday night.
The 23-year-old’s family found an outpouring of support at Eastern Michigan University Friday night.
“To see you all here and all your candles and all Julia’s father could say was, wow,” said a friend who talked during the beginning of the vigil.
The family also attended a second vigil where they live in Monroe that took place earlier in the night. Julia’s younger sister broke down after she kissed her sister’s picture that now hangs in a heart from a necklace close to her own heart.
"I think her last selfless words would be, to ask everybody here to show some compassion for all of those that are going to be going through the exact same thing in Connecticut right now," James Turnquist.
"I'm overwhelmed. I can't thank everyone enough for how much this means to me and my family," said Julia's twin Jennifer Niswender.
Police found Julia Niswender dead in the bedroom of her off campus apartment Tuesday night. Police are calling her death an apparent homicide saying there are possible signs of foul play but no outward signs of trauma to her body. Friday’s vigils bought together friends like Bobby Ruffin who had class with Julia.
“It was just something about Julia’s spirit that allowed me to press on. Even when I wanted to give up at 3 o’clock in the morning-- she’d say 'no, we’re almost there. We have to get this grade.' Just an overall kind person. And to be honest, It just still doesn’t feel real,” said Ruffin.
Even complete strangers felt compelled to be at the vigils on Friday. Everyone is still trying to comprehend why this happened to the vibrant girl set to graduate next year.
EMU is also were where Julia’s twin sister Jennifer went to school. Jennifer’s friend reminded the crowd of that on campus and added that she would need her EMU family more than ever.
Police do not have a cause of death yet. They are waiting for the results of a toxicology report to come back which should take a few weeks.
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