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Kelley instructor dies after jump


By Mark Keierleber and Michael Majchrowicz

Susan Keenan, 51, a senior lecturer of accounting in the Kelley School of Business, died of injuries sustained after jumping from the fourth level of a parking garage at the Hilton Garden Inn, located at 245 N. College Ave.

Keenan taught at IU for 15 years.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with Professor Keenan’s family during this time,” Kelley Dean Daniel Smith said in an email to business students. “We know she touched many lives, and she will be deeply missed.”

At least three witnesses reported seeing Keenan jump from the parking garage and into the courtyard of the Hilton Garden Inn Friday morning, Sgt. Dana Cole said.

Keenan was initially transported to IU Health Bloomington Hospital but was taken via helicopter to IU Health Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis, where she was pronounced dead, Cole said.

Cole said Keenan jumped from the parking garage within an hour of being released from the Monroe County Jail. She had been detained for drunk driving the night before, a Class D felony because it was a repeated offense, Cole said.

“When tragedies like this occur, it is the comfort of knowing we are part of a larger Kelley School family that helps us cope with the situation,” Smith said. “For those of you who took classes from Professor Keenan, we know this may be especially difficult.

“We hope you will remember her fondly as a teacher who brought her best efforts to the classroom and made a difference for every student whose life she touched.”

Janay Ladson, who graduated from IU in May, said she did not know Keenan personally, but she heard of her because a friend had one of Keenan’s classes.

“I struggled with depression myself, and I know how bad life can be when you’re depressed,” Ladson said in a Facebook message. “I almost drowned in my own dark waters, but fortunately, I sought out professional help with a therapist before it was too late. My heart goes out to Susan’s family as they mourn of their lost.”

IU junior Tim Wang said he took A202, Introduction to Managerial Accounting, from Keenan two semesters ago.

“She was one of the most personable professors I’ve ever had,” Wang said. “On the first day of class, she came in and shook hands with pretty much everyone. She knew us all by name.”

Grief counselors at IU are available. Contact Counseling and Psychological Services at (812) 855-5711 or go to the health center during regular walk-in hours, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Saturday. Counseling after hours is also available using the crisis phone line at (812) 855-5711 and selecting option one.  

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