‘This is truly a horrific situation’: Idaho announces plethora of counseling services amidst homicide investigation

MOSCOW, Idaho — The University of Idaho canceled classes on Monday to honor the students who died over the weekend.

Many students packed up and returned home, unwilling to wait until Thanksgiving Break.

Events like this are not common in Moscow, and the community is heartbroken after losing four members of the Vandal family. The university is now doing what they can to help students process this tragedy.

The energy around campus on Monday was quiet and empty, much different from its usually packed and energetic atmosphere.

Dean of Students Blaine Eckles shared his emotions about the situation.

“My heart breaks for the families and for the friends of the victims involved. The Vandal family stands with them in this horrific time,” Eckles said.

In a community so close knit, the impact of these deaths is being felt all across campus, especially on Greek Row.

“We’re gonna support students in whatever way they need to navigate through this. If they need to return home we’re going to support them in doing that first and foremost,” Eckles said.

The university offered drop-in counseling sessions at the student union building today, with counselors standing by, ready to assist any student.

“They can also go over to our counseling center we’ve cleared schedules to make sure our students have ready access for that support,” Eckles said.

U of I also made a 24-hour line available for students to reach help any time they need it. That number is (208) 885-6716, extension 3.

Dean Eckles says they’re doing everything they can for students, stressing that if they don’t need anything at all, don’t be afraid to reach out to them.

“My one piece of advice is communicate, let us know. Reach out to us, reach out to faculty, you will receive care and support in response,” Eckles said.

The school is now organizing a vigil for the students who were killed. It will be on Wednesday at 5 p.m. on the lawn of the Administration Building.

READ: Learning more about the four University of Idaho students killed

READ: Community shaken following the deaths of four University of Idaho students