We begin this evening's meeting by acknowledging the grief and pain that we are suffering at the loss of our colleague and friend, /*Eve Carson*/.
Eve was the president of Carolina's student body, which is how many of us came to know her. But the more we got to know her, the more we understood what an extraordinary person she was, and how broadly and deeply she touched the lives of people in /*Chapel Hill*/ and beyond.
Eve's death represents for us a terrible, incomprehensible loss. She was a person who embodied what is beautiful in this world, and it was a joy to know her. Her having been taken from us rips from us our greatest hopes and our greatest dreams and our greatest aspirations for what the world might become someday.
We are diminished by the loss of Eve, and we know it.
We mourn this day, but we will carry on. We will soldier on. We have Eve's memory and spirit to help us carry on. But we will always remember Eve; we will always cherish Eve; and Eve will always be with us in Chapel Hill, to challenge us with her beauty and grace, her intelligence and charm, her compassion and idealism.
Eve's spirit will challenge us to be a place where youth can flourish and hope can endure and evil will be forever banished. And although we cannot replace Eve, we do know that she was a person who mattered in this world by the work she did, and she was destined to do great things. Rather than have those things remain undone, each of us can look to pick up a piece of the work that Eve did, and to do the work she would have done, the way she would have done it.
My colleagues on the council and I have been a part of the sorrow of our community, and we have reached out to Eve's family and to our colleagues on campus and beyond. We have extended to Chancellor Moeser our deepest sympathy to the campus community, and we have sought to comfort everyone in our town. Each of us has suffered, individually and collectively, a harm that is deep and piercing.
Yesterday, my wife Nancy and I attended Eve's memorial service at her hometown in Athens, Georgia. We had the opportunity to meet Eve's mother, Teresa, her father, Bob, and her brother, Andrew. We told them how much Chapel Hill valued Eve and how heartsick all of us are.
Eve's family was very gracious, and even under the burden of such surpassing grief thanked us, and all of you for your thoughts and your support.
Athens and Chapel Hill are now forever bound. We are bound by the thread of the life of a lovely young woman who touched us as she graced this world.
Please join me in a moment of silence to remember Eve; but I hope that this moment will resonate around the world, and that our moment will awaken this world with our cry of grief at this senseless death.
I would also like to call attention this evening to the assistance that is available to everyone in our community who is coping with this tragedy and who needs assistance. Our town has a crisis unit, housed in our police department, that is ready to help, and I ask you please to call them to seek that help if you need it. Contact information is available on the town website or by calling Town Hall.
In addition, the university has counseling available and people ready to assist members of the campus community during this difficult time.