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Ohio State students who died from apparent overdoses remembered at spring commencement

University President Kristina Johnson held a moment of silence for the two students who died last week.

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Two Ohio State students who died from reported overdoses last week were recognized during spring commencement on Sunday.

Students celebrated their achievements through college and prepared themselves to step into the next phase in life.

During the ceremony, the Buckeye community took time to remember those whose lives were cut short and not able to walk across the stage.  

University President Kristina Johnson led the crowd in a moment of silence for the two students who died last week.

“And before I end, I have one request for you and the entire Buckeye community. Throughout the year we have lost students, faculty and staff members, including two students this past week. Such devastating news. Our hearts go out to their families and friends at this moment of shock and grief. This of course comes on the heels of two years of grief and loss caused by the pandemic. Although these loved ones and friends can not be physically with us, their impact will always be present,” she said in her speech.

Police and medics were called Wednesday night to a home on East Lane Avenue after a 911 caller said their roommates were overdosing.  Three people were taken to the hospital that night.

University officials announced Thursday evening that one of the students died. The announcement of the second student’s passing came Friday morning.

The third student was treated and released from the hospital.

The university did not release the names of the students who died or say what caused the overdoses.

On Thursday evening, Ohio State’s Office of Student Life did send out a safety message on Thursday about fake Adderall pills. The message says the fake pills appear to contain fentanyl and are causing an increase in overdoses and hospitalizations.

The university said while they strongly discourage drug use of any kind, students should be aware of the possibility of unexpected contaminates or how drugs may unsafely interact with alcohol.

Students can confidentially pick up a free Naloxone kit or fentanyl strips at the Wlice Student Health Center at 1875 Millikin Road during business hours.

You can read more about the school's safety message here.

Counseling services are available for students in need by calling 614-292-5766.

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