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Memorial flowers at Intercultural Center
Manchester to dedicate Peace Pole in memory of students killed in crash

NORTH MANCHESTER, Ind. – Manchester University President Dave McFadden announced today that a Peace Pole will be dedicated to three students killed in a traffic accident earlier this year.

In mid-September, family members of the students – Nerad Mangai, Brook “BK” Dagnew and Kirubel Hailu – will visit the North Manchester campus. While they are here, there will be a brief memorial service and dedication of the Peace Pole at the site of the future Intercultural Center.

This will be at 1 p.m. Friday, Sept., 16, at College Avenue and East Street.

McFadden will share plans for a new Intercultural Center for which the University is raising funds. Other Manchester speakers will include Michael Dixon, director of intercultural services; Bekah Houff, University pastor; and Benson Onyeji, professor of political science. 

Mangai was from Nigeria, and Dagnew and Hailu were from Ethiopia. They were killed early Feb. 21 when they were struck by a vehicle while they were dealing with a flat tire on Interstate 69 in Grant County.

“Their relatives are traveling a great distance to be with us because our love has helped them through these difficult months. It is my hope that they find further comfort and healing during their visit,” McFadden said in an email to the MU community.

The Peace Pole will remain at the site until construction begins on the new Intercultural Center next year. That facility will include a permanent memorial to the students inside and, when the building is finished, the Peace Pole will be reinstalled permanently outside.

“I can think of no better symbol to reflect Manchester’s values than a Peace Pole. And I can think of no greater testament to learning from differences than a new Intercultural Center. From that special place, the spirit of Nerad, BK and Kirubel will continue to enrich our lives,” McFadden said in the email.

A Peace Pole is a monument that displays the message "May Peace Prevail on Earth” on one face and then translations on other faces. In this case, languages of significance to the students will be featured.

Aug. 18, 2016

For the media:

If you are coming to campus, contact Anne Gregory in media relations beforehand at or 260-982-5285. You can also send a text to 260-417-5061.

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