U of U shooting victim remembered by friends as outgoing man of faith

ChenWei Guo. Photo: Facebook

To read about the suspect’s capture, click here.

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, Oct. 31, 2017 (Gephardt Daily) — Friends and associates are remembering University of Utah shooting victim ChenWei Guo as an outgoing man of faith with a promising future.

Guo, 23 and a native of China, was fatally shot Monday night in a carjacking attempt by a suspect in a Colorado homicide case. Police were able to take suspect Austin Boutain, 24, into custody Tuesday afternoon. Kathleen Boutain, the suspect’s wife, was in custody Monday night, and is also wanted in the Golden, Colorado, killing, police said at an earlier news conference Tuesday.

Lori McDonald, U of U Dean of Students, also spoke at the news conference. She said she didn’t know Guo, but had spoken overnight with his friends and associates.

“He was extraordinarily outgoing, charming, smart, and extremely engaged with the community,” McDonald said, sharing their impressions. “We are so very deeply saddened.”

University of Utah President David Pershing said in a letter that school officials had been in touch with Guo’s parents, and were arranging for them to come to Utah. Guo was his parents’ only child.

McDonald said Guo’s tragic loss and the violence on campus had “clearly impacted the University community.”

Guo was a pre-computer major and a peer adviser to international students. A native of China, he had served a Utah-Provo mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He had been at the U for a year, McDonald said.

Many who posted memories and messages on Guo’s Facebook page remembered him as a man of faith. Some of their posts follow:

• In case you didn’t here. Last night there was a shooting at the U of U here in Salt Lake City. My good friend and old roommate Chen was shot and killed. He was from China. Please keep his family in your prayers. We love and miss you ChenWei Guo . — From a man in Arizona

• Chen, when I saw the news, I really didn’t want to believe that you were the one who was killed, that we met at the church three years ago, and that smile of your sunshine, your approachable smile forever. Friend, hope you’re all right in heaven. — From a Springvile man, translated from Chinese

• I am in total shock. Elder ChenWei Guo, you will be missed. You have touched the lives of so many people and I believe you will continue to do so. — from a male friend who knew Guo in Provo

• I’m so sad right now to hear about you passed away. I will miss you so much. You are a good example for me and I looked up at you a lot. I know your testimony will be a witness to those who are at the other side. Your family is in my prayer. Rest in peace my best friend. — From a woman in Bangkok

• My dear friend! Despite driving the coolest cars you were super humble and down to earth. You were incredibly welcoming to me as a friend and I enjoyed every time you came and hung out with the crew. You always had the craziest stories and I sure will miss you greatly. — From a man in Salt Lake City

• ChenWei Guo I was shocked and saddened to hear of your passing. The power of your conversion story has remained with me ever since you shared it. I have admired you ever since we first met. I will be keeping your family in my prayers. — From a man in East Jerusalem

• Kyle ChenWei Guo .. I cannot believe it. Thank you so much for always being such an amazing light and great influence. I will miss you on Earth, my friend..’til we meet again. — From a former Salt Lake City missionary

• It was a privilege to have been able to served with such an incredible warrior. I recall every district training meeting, you never failed to filled us with the spirit and laughter. I love you Elder ChenWei Guo you will be missed by sooo many people that love you. — From a former female missionary, now living in Texas


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