A missing SIU student, 19-year-old Pravin Varughese, was found dead in the woods near Carbondale, Illinois, this week. The criminal justice major and sophomore level student vanished after a party just last Wednesday. UPI News reports this Tuesday, Feb. 18, 2014, that the Carbondale community, as well as Varughese’s family and friends, are mourning the loss of the young man.
The missing SIU student was said to have disappeared from the Southern Illinois University campus in the middle of last week after a big party. Police authorities noted in their report that Pravin Varughese was getting a ride back home with a “recent acquaintance” from the event. However, at some time during the drive a fight is believed to have occurred, leading the college student to leave the car and enter a wooded area.
“The difficult terrain and low temperatures are believed to have contributed to Pravin’s difficulty finding his way out of the wooded area,” Carbondale police said in a statement.
It is believed that the 19-year-old found dead in the woods must have gotten lost out in the dense forest-like area. However, specific circumstances surrounding Pravin's death have not been made clear yet. The Varughese family was willing to give a full $15,000 reward for any witnesses that were able to give information on the missing young man. An emergency Facebook page, titled “Missing: Pravin Varughese,” was established over the weekend as family and friends desperately hoped to find him.
Now, following confirmations that the missing SIU student was discovered dead after vanishing in the woods, a statement has been issued on the Facebook page in memorial:
“On behalf of our Family, we wanted to thank you all for your kind words, endless support and prayers for Pravin. Authorities have confirmed this morning that they have found his body. We ask that you continue to keep Pravin's parents and sisters in your prayers as we go through this difficult time and mourn the loss of a beloved Son Brother, Grandson, Nephew, Cousin, & Friend.”
The SIU fraternity that Varughese also belonged to offered a message on Twitter in tribute to their fallen friend as well
"Today we lost a brother, a member, and a friend. R.I.P. Dev. You will always be family to us and forever in our hearts."