Stanford University women’s soccer star Katie Meyer has been found dead on the California university’s campus at the age of 22.
Ms Meyer, the goalkeeper and captain of her team, died at an on-campus residence hall, the university has confirmed, but a cause of death has not been provided.
The senior athlete, who was studying international relations and history, helped Stanford win the national championship in 2019.
This is everything we know so far about her death.
‘A larger-than-life team player in all her pursuits’
“Her friends describe her as a larger-than-life team player in all her pursuits, from choosing an academic discipline she said ‘changed my perspective on the world and the very important challenges that we need to work together to overcome’ to the passion she brought to the Cardinal women’s soccer program and to women’s sports in general,” Stanford said in a statement.
The university added that it has made resources available for those impacted by Ms Meyer’s death.
“There are no words to express the deep sadness we feel about Katie Meyer’s passing,” Stanford athletic director Bernard Muir said in a statement. “Katie was an outstanding student-athlete and a beloved, passionate leader here at Stanford. Our entire athletics community is heartbroken and Katie will be deeply missed.”
Student death announced 1 March
The school initially announced the death of a student on Tuesday but did not announce Ms Meyer’s name until her family had been told.
Ms Meyer, who went to high school in Newbury Park, California, has one older sister and one younger sister.
‘Police stated that there is no ongoing safety threat to those on campus’
In an initial statement on 1 March, Vice Provost for Student Affairs Susie Brubaker-Cole said that she was “writing today to forward tragic news: the passing of an undergraduate in an on-campus residence. In honoring the family’s privacy, we cannot yet share the student’s identity nor can we share the cause of death. The police stated that there is no ongoing safety threat to those on campus.”
“As we engage with the family to understand how we can support them, we are reaching out to provide care to the student’s friends. We recognize the profound pain the broader community will feel about this news, and we want to encourage all of you to reach out for support should you need it,” she added.
“We are all heartbroken about this immense tragedy. As more information becomes available, we will share it with you,” she said.
In a follow-up statement announcing that it was Ms Meyer who had died, Dr Brubaker-Cole said the goalkeeper was “was extraordinarily committed to everything and everyone in her world”.
“Fiercely competitive, Katie made two critical saves in a penalty shootout against North Carolina to help Stanford win its third NCAA women’s soccer championship in 2019,” Dr Brubaker-Cole added.
“Katie was a bright shining light for so many on the field and in our community,” she said.
‘Balancing a tight schedule becomes easier when you have your best friends by your side’
“Balancing school and soccer has been challenging, but it’s all I’ve ever really known!” Ms Meyer said in a statement on the university website on 18 October last year. “Traveling during fall season can be stressful because I miss classes, but my professors have been so accommodating and understanding… my teammates and I try to pay them back by getting big wins for the Farm.”
“Thankfully, everyone on my team really loves school and we all do our reading and [problem sets] together on the road; hotel lobbies and the coffee shops we constantly seek out while we travel are actually very productive spaces,” she added. “Balancing a tight schedule becomes a little bit easier when you have your best friends by your side to help motivate you.”
“I had always been interested in history and politics, but once I started learning about international law and international security, I was completely hooked,” Ms Meyer stated at the time.
“There are no words to express the emptiness that we feel at this moment,” Dr Brubaker-Cole said in an update on Wednesday.
“We can all help by checking in on friends and loved ones. Be caring to yourselves and one another. We will grieve this great loss together, and we will be here for each other,” she added.
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.