Campus raises funds, awareness for deceased student

By Tara Kulash


Students are trending this on Twitter after an accident killed Corey Gowin, a sophomore at John A. Logan studying social work, who was struck by a vehicle Thursday while crossing the street in his motorized wheelchair.

The trend leads to a Twitter account by the same name and an email address for donations to Gowin’s family for funeral services.


Shakeia Smith, a senior from Carbondale studying cinema and photography, said the visitation for Gowin is Monday from 6 to 8 p.m. at Walker’s Funeral Home. After the visitation, she said, there will be a candlelight vigil for him at the Sam Rinella Field by the

Brush Towers.

Gowin was crossing the street on Illinois Route 13 in front of University Mall when he was hit by an SUV. Police investigation of the accident is continuing, but no citations were issued.

Tamara Gowin, Gowin’s mother, said her son will be cremated and taken to Campbell, Mo., to be buried with his grandparents.

She said Gowin was always happy and joking, and he loved to be a part of the acting troupe OOPS! Entertainment at SIUC.

E.J. Clark, a junior from St. Louis studying civil engineering, is in charge of the fundraising and said so far about $2,000 has been raised.

He said he wants to raise at least $10,000, though, because it would be great to start a scholarship or foundation in Gowin’s name.

Clark met Gowin at a Black Male Roundtable meeting, he said, and they participated in two Tunnel of Oppression events together.

“The friendship was genuine,” he said.

Smith said she knew Gowin from OOPS! Entertainment.

“We grew a friendship there — well, more like family,” she said.

Smith took Gowin to church with her sometimes, she said, and he was an inspiration to other disabled members of the community.

“He was a real sweetheart and would dedicate his time to whatever was going on,” she said. “If he told someone he was going to be there, he would be there.”

She said it’s important to have the fundraiser and candlelight vigil, because if it was for someone else, Gowin would do the same.