College to remember student killed by wrong-way driver

BROOKLYN, OH (WOIO) - Students at Baldwin Wallace have planned a memorial service for 20-year-old Kayla Coates, a sophomore killed by a wrong-way driver early Sunday morning.

The service was organized by the student government, and will be held at the Strosacker Union ballroom at 9:30 pm. Tuesday. It's just one way the campus is coming together to remember one of their own.

Cleveland 19 spoke to several students on the campus Monday, most of them said they found out Coates had been killed by an email the university sent out.

Seniors Deanna Hill and Madeline Fortune said the news makes the campus of more than 3,300 undergraduates feel very small.

"It's really sad because we do have such a tight-knit community that we hear one of our own has been hurt," said Fortune.

"She was only 20-years-old, like she had her whole life to live. She was going to college, and getting that experience, and it's really heartbreaking because she won't get to experience turning 21 or graduating college or anything like that," said Hill.

According to Brooklyn Police Coates was driving the right way on I-480 westbound at about 4:30 a.m. when her car was hit by a 48-year-old man driving the wrong way.

Coates was pronounced dead at the scene, the driver of the other car was taken to the hospital.

"We're all terribly saddened and shocked by the news this morning that she had passed away," said Baldwin-Wallace Vice President Dick Fletcher.

According to Coates' last Facebook post, the accounting student was heading to open the local McDonald's where she worked, and it was the last time she was scheduled to open the restaurant.

The Brooklyn Police Department said they expect to release an update on the investigation Tuesday.

Coates' sister has set up a page for funeral expenses.

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