FREMONT — The front lawn at Fremont Ross High School was filled Thursday with the light of about 500 candles from people who had gathered the commemorate Cory Barron.
Dressed in purple and white to honor his alma mater, community members came to the stage one at a time to share memories of Mr. Barron, 22, of Fremont.
“Fremont has lost a wonderful young man to unspeakable tragedy,” Superintendent of Schools Tracy McCaudy said.
Mr. Barron’s body was found Tuesday in a county landfill in Oberlin, 30 miles west of Progressive Field, where he was last seen at a country music concert July 18. Investigators are awaiting the results of a full medical examination because results of the initial autopsy were inconclusive.
Mr. Barron attended Bowling Green State University, where he majored in communications, after graduating from Fremont Ross in 2010.
The vigil commenced with a moment of silence. Mike Dukeshire, who coordinated the event, is a neighbor of the Barrons. His son played football with Mr. Barron at Fremont Ross for the Little Giants. Mr. Dukeshire said friends wanted to gather for a vigil to show the Barron family their support.
Kent Weaver, who helped organized a similar vigil Tuesday, said that Thursday’s larger event was meant to help the family grieve.
Mr. Barron’s siblings, Clay Barron and Britta Barron, attended the vigil, while his parents asked the event be filmed so they could view it later.
“The whole community is in shock,” Mr. Dukeshire said. “Cory is the kid you wanted your kids to grow up with. He could sit down at any dinner table and feel welcome. He was the all-American boy.”
Many friends recalled Mr. Barron as an enthusiastic sports fan, particularly of Cleveland franchises.
“I thought he was going to cry a river when LeBron James came back,” Eric Kingsborough aid.
Mr. Kingsborough recalled Mr. Barron as someone who was always happy, regardless of life’s ups and downs.
Supporters plan to sell purple and white wristbands printed with #liveforcory. The $3 bands will be for sale in the community beginning Saturday.
Donations also are being accepted at Croghan Colonial Bank in Fremont for a memorial fund, which will benefit St. Jude Hospital’s autism program.
Ms. McCaudy said the school district would offer grief counseling to current and former students at the high school from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. today and Monday.
Contact Maya Averbuch at: firstname.lastname@example.org, 419-724-6522, or on Twitter @mayaaverbuch.