Indiana University chemistry doctoral student Karlijn Keijzer was a passenger on the ill-fated Malaysian flight MH17.
MH17 was shot down by a surface-to-air missile while flying over Ukraine from Amsterdam en route to Kuala Lumpur.
All 298 people on board the plane perished in the incident.
Keijzer, 25, was on board the plane, according to Indiana University rowing team head coach Stephen Peterson.
“The Indiana Rowing family is deeply saddened by the news of Karlijn’s sudden passing,” Peterson said.
“She came to us for one year as a graduate student and truly wanted to pursue rowing.
“That year was the first year we really started to make a mark with the First Varsity 8 boat and she was a huge reason for it.”
— Indiana Athletics (@OurIndiana) July 18, 2014
According to the Indiana Hoosiers Women’s Rowing page, Keijzer was part of IU’s Varsity 8 boat during the 2011 season, and helped them to a 14-5 record.
She won Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association (CRCA) Scholar-Athlete honors as well as Academic All-Big Ten accolades in 2011.
Keijzer also participated in the European Rowing Junior Championships in 2006 and the World Rowing Junior Championships in 2007.
Peterson said, “She was a phenomenal student and loved IU so much that she stayed here after she earned her master’s degree.
“Our condolences go out to her family and friends in this very tough time.”
(AP Photo/Indiana University)
Keijzer recently passed her doctoral candidacy exam in the spring, according to her classmate Meghan McCormick.
“She was so good at putting in the effort and the hard work,” Meghan McCormick told Indy Star.
“I always looked up to her and her confidence and her strength. She always knew what she wanted.”
McCormick remembered Keijzer as being a warm and friendly person who made friends easily.
Mu-Hyun Baik, associate professor of chemistry and informatics and Karlijn Keijzer’s doctoral advisor, also released a statement.
“Karlijn was a bright, talented doctoral student, a diligent researcher and a dear friend to all of us who worked with her in our research group. She was a kind, happy young woman full of ideas about the future. She inspired us all with her optimism about how science will make Earth a better place.
“Ms. Keijzer worked on several research projects, all related to improving human health. The last piece of research work she completed before heading out to catch her flight to her short summer vacation was preparing a computer simulation on bryostatin, an anti-cancer drug and a promising drug candidate for treating Alzheimer’s disease.”
“We are devastated and mourn the loss of a brilliant, beloved member of IU’s chemistry family.”