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  • Collegian staff

Blitz the Bearcat found dead in Miami

Kaiytliayn Trree

(Not Kathleen Forrest)


Witness description of the crime scene as described to Josie Elicker

On April 1, 2022 Willamette University revealed in an email to the student body that Blitz the Bearcat had been found dead in Miami. The cause of death has not been verified by a coroner yet, but early reports suggest that it was homicide. Director of Campus Safety Hoss Trout said that Willamette’s previous mascot, Barney the Bearcat, had not been ruled out as a suspect.

Student responses to the loss in the community have been varied, with one notable instance involving a student falling to their knees in Goudy Commons and screaming, “No! Why, God, Why!?” before openly weeping for the better part of an hour. Multiple CARE reports were filed for the student and lunch continued on around them.

Students are planning various forms of vigils, wakes, drinking games, and dance-a-thons to honor the lost mascot. The university as of yet has not announced any plans for a funeral, but has stated that flowers and memorials may be placed across the seal in Jackson Plaza as it is also the entrance to Blitz’s underground lair.

The university said that last they heard Blitz was in Nashville visiting family for Spring Break, and they have no idea what Blitz was doing in Miami. “Look, I’m not Blitz’s keeper, I don’t control where they are at all times,” said one of the Blitz coordinators. Barney the Bearcat was unavailable for comment, with their email explaining that they were on vacation in the Florida Keys for the next few weeks.

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