BERKELEY, Calif. (KTVU) - UC Berkeley students organized a memorial for Tarishi Jain, the Cal student who was killed on Friday during the Bangladesh terrorist attack.
Jain, 18, just finished her freshman year at Cal and was in Bangladesh for a summer internship organized by the university.
Several friends of Jain couldn’t hold back tears and their anguish speaking about Tarishi’s life at UC Berkeley and her impact on their lives. Many friends were away for summer vacation, but her vigil on Sproul Plaza drew a large crowd and was being shared online for the students who couldn’t attend.
“I flew in just for this, because I felt it was really important,” said Jain’s floor mate Mackenzie Monroe.
“Being at school, right where we are on Sproul is where I would see Tarishi all the time. She was such a good person. I think it’s helpful to be here.”
Jain was an international student from India, intending to major in economics. She was a member of the International Students Association at Berkeley and the student-run business EthiCAL Apparel. She made many friends in her first year at CAL, who told stories of late night dance parties, sharing homemade Indian food, and having heartfelt conversations about living away from home.
“I looked at Tarishi and thought ‘Wow, this girl is incredible. We’re going to be friends for a long time,” said close friend Anisha Chemmachel.
Her freshman flat mates said they had plans to reconnect for monthly dinners during their sophomore year.
“She loved Bangladesh,” said Monroe.
“She loved it and was not scared to be there. That was her home and she was happy there.”
The Associated Students of UC Berkeley planned the vigil on Tuesday afternoon, despite the summer break.
“The main purpose for creating this space now was to provide that space for students who are here now, present on campus, as well as students who are present just over the interwebs to just feel like they have a space to grieve collectively,” said ASUC president William Morrow.
The vigil was also a time for the university to share it has grief counselors available on campus. Several members of campus organizations and the Bangladeshi and Indian communities in Berkeley also spoke at
Jain’s vigil to show respect for her family and friends, as well as condemn the terrorist attacks.
Jain’s closest friends said they don’t want her death to define her legacy of compassion and ambition to make the world a better place.
“I don’t know how to end this, because I don’t know if this will ever be over for me,” said Chemmachel at the end of her speech.
“I am so sorry, Tarishi. I miss you and I’ll love you forever.”