Family & friends share stories of former student

James Michael Foreman, an Elon University student who died one year ago, was remembered Friday on the anniversary of his death with a ceremony and butterfly release outside the main entrance to the Moseley Center.

Foreman, 19, a sophomore communications student, was killed by a train yards away from campus on April 11, 2007. On Friday, his family, friends and former professors offered reflections on a student brimming with what one administrator called “great promise and talent.”

“His kindness and generosity touched and inspired the hearts of so many people,” said Elon junior Kaveen Sujanani, a former roommate with Foreman. “He always put other people’s comforts before his.”

Foreman’s mother, Marge, also spoke to the crowd of more than 50 people gathered around the flowerbed at the center of Young Commons. Marge Foreman praised Elon officials for how they comforted her in the hours after her son’s death.

“There are no words to express what’s in my heart for this university,” said Foreman, who is a member of the Parents Council. “You were there for him, and you’ve been there for me.”

The remembrance included prayer and a song performed by Elon student Martina Barnett, whose rendition of “The Wind Beneath My Wings” brought her – as well as others in attendance – to tears.

At the end of the ceremony, the crowd gathered in a semi-circle to release butterflies into the warm spring breeze.