It has been just over two weeks since an integral member of our community passed away. Cornell University senior Ilan Rasooly was visiting the University of Maryland for the Jewish holidays when he fell and sustained mortal head injuries.

The following is the reflection of one staff member:

“I grew up with Rasooly in Silver Spring, MD. We attended the same Jewish day school and had overlapping circles of friends. Many of these individuals now attend school here at UMD and were with him during the accident.

The night before his accident, I bumped into Rasooly in the Maryland Hillel lobby after holiday prayer services. There was quite a crowd at Hillel that night – the holidays are a popular time for guests from other colleges to visit. I was getting lost in the crowd, but Rasooly came over to say hello, and we chatted for while before dinner. He made me think about how important it is to recognize people in an uncomfortable social situation and make them feel like a part of the community.”

Several of Rasooly’s close friends are sponsoring a Talmud study initiative in his honor. Kedma, the Orthodox student group on campus, will be holding a mishmar study session in memory of Ilan on Nov. 20.


Blog at