Former IU rower on board Malaysian flight

Karlijn Keijzer (Indiana University Athletics Photo)
Karlijn Keijzer (Indiana University Athletics Photo)

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (WISH) — A former Indiana University rower was one of 298 people killed on the Malaysian Airlines flight that was downed in the Ukraine on Thursday, an IU spokesperson confirms.

Twenty-five-year-old Karlijn Keijzer was on board Malaysian Airlines Flight 17.

Keijzer was a doctoral student in the chemistry department in the College of Arts and Sciences, officials with IU say. She was from Amsterdam, Netherlands and earned her Master’s Degree from IU.

In a release from the university Friday, IU President Michael A. McRobbie said:

On behalf of the entire Indiana University community, I want to express my deepest sympathies to Karlijn’s family and friends over her tragic death. Karlijn was an outstanding student and a talented athlete, and her passing is a loss to the campus and the university. Our hearts also go out to the families of all the victims of this senseless act.

Keijzer was a member of the women’s rowing team during the 2011 season. University officials say she earned Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association (CRCA) Scholar-Athlete honors and Academic All-Big Ten accolades after the season. She also competed in international rowing championships in 2006 and 2007.

Indiana head rowing coach Steve Peterson also issued a statement in Friday’s release from IU:

The Indiana Rowing family is deeply saddened by the news of Karlijn’s sudden passing. She came to us for one year as a graduate student and truly wanted to pursue rowing. That year was the first year we really started to make a mark with the First Varsity 8 boat and she was a huge reason for it. She was a phenomenal student and loved IU so much that she stayed here after she earned her master’s degree. Our condolences go out to her family and friends in this very tough time.

The Associated Press reports the 298 people on board were from at least 10 countries. The nationalities of those on board, based on information from the airline and relevant countries include:

  • Netherlands: 189
  • Malaysia: 44 (including 15 crew and two infants)
  • Australia: 28
  • Indonesia: 12 (including one infant)
  • United Kingdom: 9
  • Germany: 4
  • Belgium: 4
  • Philippines: 3
  • Canada: 1
  • New Zealand: 1
  • Hong Kong: 1
  • Unconfirmed nationalities: 2
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