YSU Mourns Students’ Deaths Sept. 25

By Kelcey Norris 

Photo courtesy of YSU

Students and faculty mourn the deaths of two Youngstown State University international students, Muctar B. Kamara and Nekian F. Sesay, who lost their lives in a fatal single-car crash Sept. 25. 

Kamara, the driver, was taken to University Hospitals Portage but did not survive. A backseat passenger, 19-year-old Sesay, succumbed to her injuries on the scene near milepost 50 on Interstate 76. 

Two other passengers who were YSU students survived the accident. Imran Sawaneh, a 19-year-old pre-information technology major, was flown to Akron City Hospital where his injuries are being treated. Aicha A. Sawaneh, a 20-year-old political science major, is also recovering from her injuries at University Hospitals Portage. 

All four of the passengers involved in the accident riding in the 2003 Honda Accord were originally from Freetown, Sierra Leone, located in West Africa. 

YSU President Jim Tressel released a statement in response to the tragedy. 

“Our International Programs Office has notified the families of the students, as well as friends and fellow international students,” he said. “Counseling is available to students and others seeking assistance.”

“On behalf of the entire Penguin family, we express our sincere sympathies to the family and friends of the two deceased students, and lift up our prayers and hopes for the two injured students,” Tressel continued. 

Mark Vopat, YSU’s division of Ohio Education Association spokesperson, also released a statement concerning the tragedy. 

“We are incredibly saddened by the loss of our students and extend our deepest sympathies to their friends and family here and abroad,” Vopat said. “We also extend our condolences to the two surviving students and hope they are able to find some solace during this incredibly difficult time.” 

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