- Letter from students who knew Satti (TXT - 2kb)
'Waiting for answers'
Friends, co-workers remember slain UF student, seek closure
Published: Friday, January 16, 2004 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, January 16, 2004 at 1:22 a.m.
University of Florida graduate assistant Sudheer Reddy Satti loved cartoons, had a sweet tooth and enjoyed Gator football games.
FYI: MEMORIAL FUND
Donations to the Sudheer Satti Memorial Fund can be made by check or credit card. Checks should be made payable to ICEC and mailed to:
Mrs. Indira Hazariwal
6512 NW 50th Lane
Gainesville, FL 32653
Checks should be marked
"The Sudheer Satti Memorial Fund."
Those were just a few of the everyday recollections friends and co-workers shared at a memorial service held Thursday for the 24-year-old in the Reitz Union Grand Ballroom. Satti was found Jan. 4 slain in his bedroom at his campus apartment in Maguire Village off SW 34th Street.
Those who spoke during the hour-long service, from Satti's ex-roommate to his former faculty adviser, focused on the Indian man's life and achievements.
But never far from their thoughts remained questions of why Satti died and how anyone could have hurt him.
A letter, written by students who knew Satti and read to the crowd of about 100, said, "Mortality is the ultimate destiny of our journey on this earth, but to die at 24 and in such a brutal way is something we cannot comprehend. We are still waiting for answers as to why this happened, and we are still waiting for justice so whoever took our friend from us will be punished.
"We know this will not bring back our friend, but we will have a closure to the tragedy that has befallen all of us."
Satti had been stabbed multiple times, police have reported. Initial reports put the number of wounds at about 30 to the head and torso, sources familiar with the case have said.
At one point, Satti's family in Hyderabad, India, didn't know if they would have his body returned home. They were worried about damage from the attack.
But UF Police Lt. Joe Sharkey said Satti's body was sent Thursday to Miami and would be back with his family Monday.
Police have not released any information about suspects or a motive in the case, and would not discuss results of testing on evidence collected from the crime scene and forwarded to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement office in Jacksonville last week.
A murder weapon and missing electronic equipment from Satti's apartment also have not been located, Sharkey said.
Joseph Tedesco, department chairman of civil engineering, talked about Satti's academic career. Describing him as a serious and dedicated student, he said Satti "always seemed to find time to help other students."
A scholarship will be started in Satti's name, Tedesco said.
A memorial fund also has been established with the money going to Satti's family.
Praveen Vedam, a friend of Satti's and former roommate off campus, gave a message from his family, thanking his friends and the University of Florida for their support.
Members of the Indian Student Association played an Indian prayer song, said to be a favorite of Mahatma Gandhi, at the service. People who knew Satti also contributed more than 50 photos of him, many showing him outdoors and almost always smiling with a group of friends, that were shown at the service.
Jennifer Jacobs, who had been Satti's faculty adviser at UF, finished reading the letter from his fellow students. Satti had planned to leave Gainesville to pursue his doctorate at the University of New Hampshire, where Jacobs had transferred.
"If memory serves us right, you believed in reincarnation," the end of the letter said. "So may you be reincarnated with a better life and happy ending to enrich the lives of others as you enriched ours in this lifetime."
Lise Fisher can be reached at 374-5092 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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