U.S. woman Erica Faith Hagan was found dead in Temuco, Chile, in her campus apartment where she was teaching English. The U.S. woman was found unresponsive in her apartment Saturday morning and her family was notified this weekend.
Hagan’s aunt, Charlene Martin, told WSIL-TV, “This was a phenomenal, well-loved young lady that deserved better. She had so much potential and she was going places in her life. I was so proud of that young lady. So proud.”
The 22-year-old Kentucky woman had been in Chile since July, teaching English at Colegio Bautista, a private Baptist school. ABC News notes that the school released a statement noting that police in Temuco “are investigating her death as a possible homicide.
Martin also noted that Hagan “loved to travel, she loved to help people… She was terribly happy.”
Erica was documenting her time in Chile on her blog, Where in the World? She wrote in her final post Friday:
“God has blessed me with many people that care how I spend my time and don’t want me to be lonely while I’m here. Everyday I meet more people that invite me to be social with them and I love it! The hardest part is for me to take them up on them by asking them to keep me company during my free time.”
Hagan was supposed to return home in December. Instead, her friends and family are mourning her loss and trying to learn what happened to their precious girl.
Fox News notes that prosecutor Cristian Paredes told reporters, “At this point we do not dismiss any hypothesis. As of today we consider this a homicide.”
News of Erica Faith Hagan’s death shocked students and faculty at Georgetown College, a small Christian school in Kentucky where the woman graduated this year.
Her psychology professor, Jay Castaneda, told Fox News, “There is a lot of grief here. It’s definitely affected our campus.” He added that Hagan was a very lively person who “had a lot of energy. She was driven to service, to work in other countries and to help people in need.”
Admissions official Jeremiah Tudor added that Hagan was a “bubble of energy” who visited Chile three years before to do missionary work with classmates. College officials reported that Hagan’s father was on his way to Chile.
Colegio Bautista issued a statement on its website that it is suspending classes and campus activities while police investigate the woman’s death. The Georgetown College Office for Faith and Service is expected to hold a memorial service this week in remembrance of Erica Faith Hagan.