Two Students Pass Away in One Week, CMC Holds Candlelight Remembrance for Community, Livestream Questions for Parents

Students received the following emails Tuesday and Wednesday regarding the death of Eric Cramer. Cramer entered CMC with the class of 2018. He died exactly one week after Jeremy Peterson, another student in the same class.

RE: our saddest loss

Dear Students, Faculty and Staff:

Our student Eric Cramer died earlier today in his room in Beckett Hall. Words cannot express my deepest sadness. We must endure this all together.

We are still awaiting the coroner’s determination of the cause of death. We are in contact with Eric’s family and are providing full support.  

This is so difficult for all of us, especially in the wake of our loss last week. I am so proud of our community and the care we provide to one another.  

Know that you are not alone. We are all here. Please reach out to listen and support one another, including staff in the Dean of Students Office, RAs, First Year Guides, and the many faculty, administrators, and coaches with whom you are close. 

If you would like to speak with someone this evening, please do reach out.  Counselors are on site in Heggblade and the Athenaeum this evening. 

The Athenaeum is open until 10 p.m. as a supportive place where all members of our community—students, faculty, and staff—are welcome to gather.

Students may also call 909 621-8202 to speak to an on-call therapist after hours. Staff and faculty may call the Employee Assistance Program at 800 234-5465 for 24-hour support. 

Counselors will be available in Heggblade tomorrow from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.  Chaplains will also have hours tomorrow in Heggblade Center. 

The deans and I are all here on campus tonight and will be at the Athenaeum by 7:30 p.m. to be with you.

As we grieve the loss of Eric, we are here for each other.

Very best,

Hiram

RE: candlelight remembrance, 8 p.m., Butler Plaza, Bauer Center

Dear All:

The CMC community has now suffered two serious losses in a short time, the second of which appears to be self-harm. The hurt among our students is immense, as it is with our faculty and staff at CMC and all of the Claremont colleges.

Tonight, we invite you all to gather in community at a candlelight remembrance at 8:00 p.m. at Butler Plaza near the Bauer Center to honor the lives of Jeremy Peterson and Eric Cramer, and to draw on the collective strength of friends and colleagues.

In the coming days and weeks we will gather again—to create space to talk through the challenges we face, and to seek powerful ways to support the safety, health, and wellness of our students. Once released, official information from the authorities will help inform those critical conversations.

We remain in close touch with the Peterson and Cramer families and thank you for the outpouring of concern and respect for them.

Very best,

Hiram, Sharon, and DT

The administration also forwarded the email to parents of current students, prefacing it with a message that said the priorities are “to remember and honor Jeremy Peterson and Eric Cramer, support their families, take care of our students, staff, and faculty, and support all of you and your families.”

The administration has also organized a livestream tomorrow at 2pm (PST) to answer questions and concerns parents may have. Parents can find the link to the livestream in their inboxes. Several emails from Deans and student leaders have mentioned the need for the community to come together, and noted the strength the students have already shown.

“We are each here, on campus, every minute and have been for the past week,“ said the email to parents from President Chodosh and Deans Basso and Graves. “From personal conversations to 250 students at the Ath last night or outside of Collins at Snack, your daughters and sons have been so supportive, so thoughtful, so strong.”

ASCMC President Maya Love reminded students to reach out to the following resources.

  • Counselors are in Heggblade today (2/27) from 10 am to 9 pm

  • Chaplains (McAlister): 909-621-8685

  • Monsour Counseling and Psychological Services (MCAPS): 909-621-8202

  • The CARE Center has a therapist with office hours on Fridays @ 4-6pm

    • Students may also call 909 621-8202 to speak to an on-call therapist after hours.

  • DOS is here for your support and concerns.

  • The 5C Mental Health Alliance (MHA) is a student-led organization dedicated to promoting dialogue about mental illness and wellness at the Claremont Colleges. Through weekly meetings, events, panels, and discussions, we attempt to de-stigmatize mental health and encourage healthy lifestyles at school.