Madison Holleran Death: University of Pennsylvania Student Dies After Apparent Suicide

January 20, 2014 Updated: July 18, 2015

Friends and classmates are among  those mourning the loss of Madison Holleran, a 19-year-old track star at the University of Pennsylvania who apparently committed suicide.

“From the few times we spoke to the countless times I’ve watched you race, I can’t believe this…from one runner to another,” one high school friend said via Twitter.

Holleran’s father told the New York Post that she killed herself over stress. 

It remains unclear exactly how Holleran died, but Philadelphia police said that the teen took her own life.

“At the end of high school and going to Penn she was the happiest girl on the planet. It was easy for her in high school,” James, 52, said.

“There was a lot more pressure in the classroom at Penn. She wasn’t normal happy Madison. Now she had worries and stress.”

Unable to hold back tears, James continued: “My daughter’s stress was self induced, and although we had started her in therapy to address her issues, she hid the severity of those issues from everyone.”

He had encouraged her daughter earlier on Friday to schedule an appointment with a therapist. She had said she would.

Holleran killed herself by jumping from a parking garage in Philadelphia.

The loss was all the more shocking because she posted a photo of the scene downtown on Instagram just hours before her death.

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of our teammate and friend, Madison Holleran. Our thoughts and prayers are with her family and friends,” Steve Dolan, the university’s director of track and field-cross country, said in a statement. “This is a challenging time for everyone involved with the program, but we will support each other in the weeks to come and help her teammates and friends find their own ways to honor her memory. We will always carry her in our hearts.”

Caitlan Carberry, a junior, told the Daily Pennsylvanian that Holleran was “a well-loved girl” and that the sorority that she was a part of was receiving lots of calls about her.

Penn President Amy Gutmann added in a statement: “The entire Penn community is deeply saddened by the death of Madison Holleran. She was bright and well-liked with an incredible future ahead of her. There are simply no words that can properly convey the sense of heartache that we all feel at such a tragic loss.”

Follow Zachary on Twitter: @zackstieber
RECOMMENDED
TOP VIDEOS