UNC student killed in thunderstorm Thursday


A UNC student was killed by a falling tree Thursday near the intersection of Franklin St. and Raleigh St. during a severe thunderstorm.

A UNC student was killed by a tree on Franklin Street during Thursday’s severe storm.

Chancellor Holden Thorp identified the woman as Xuezhou Nan in an email to the UNC community.

Thorp said she was known as Julia.

In an interview, Orange County EMS director Jim Groves said the 20-year-old student was struck by a falling tree in the 300 block of East Franklin Street near the intersection of Franklin Street and Raleigh Street.

“We were dispatched at 5:19 p.m. to a tree that had fallen on a person,” Groves said. 

By the time of their arrival, a bystander had pulled the student from under the tree. She was unresponsive, but breathing.

EMS transported the woman to UNC Hospitals, where she later died from her injuries. Groves could not confirm any further information about the student.

“It is so hard to lose one so young, especially in such a terrible, random and tragic event,” Thorp said in his email.

“I hope that all of you, Julia’s fellow Tar Heels, will keep her family and friends in your thoughts at this sad time.”

Counseling and Wellness services will be available to the UNC community. Students can call Counseling and Wellness services at 919-966-2281. Employees may contact the Employee Assistance Program at 877-314-5841.

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