Beloit College remembers graduate who was slain in Yemen

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BELOIT, Wis. (AP) — A Beloit College graduate killed earlier this month in Yemen was remembered for his compassion, photojournalism and love for travel Sunday during a small ceremony.

Luke Somers was working as a freelance photojournalist in Yemen when he was captured by an affiliate group from al-Qaida in September 2013. His death on Dec. 6 came during a U.S. rescue attempt against his captors.

The 33-year-old who was born in England was a member of Beloit College's graduating class of 2008 and earned a bachelor's degree in creative writing.

Emily Carver, who also graduated from the college in 2008, described Somers as funny and easygoing and said he was able to "resonate with the unknowns of your heart."

Somers' photos and notes were displayed during the ceremony at the college's Eaton Chapel.

English professor Shawn Gillen said Somers' eye always found the human moment during great tragedy.

It was clear from Somers' college application how much he loved to travel, Beloit College President Scott Bierman said. Somers' trips started alongside his mother when he was young, and they spent time in Turkey, Greece and Austria.

His mother, Paula, and brother, Jordan, attended the service.

Andrew Bartles, another 2008 Beloit College graduate, spoke in Arabic during the ceremony and encouraged those attending to continue to build the relationship Somers started with people in the Middle East.


Information from: Beloit Daily News,

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