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Remembering Purdue's Tyler Stephan

Purdue is mourning the unexpected loss of one of their own, Tyler Stephan.

Posted: Oct. 2, 2018 6:57 PM
Updated: Oct. 2, 2018 6:59 PM

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — Tyler Stephan was found dead Monday at the Transportation Center on Ahlers Drive in West Lafayette.

The coroner said he died of natural causes.

His mother, Tami Stephan said he died doing what he loved. 

"Anything to do with cars, he loved," said Tami. 

Tyler Stephan was cleaning cars at the Transportation center just moments before he died.

"He loved that job because he could be outside and he could work with vehicles," said Tami. 

Tyler hoped to major in Mechanical Engineering at Purdue.

"He wanted to work in the automotive industry," explained his mother. 

Tyler's death was unexpected.

"He had a hereditary heart issue that we had no idea about," said Tami Stephan. 

His mother was told Tyler's artery was completely clogged.

"He died instantly, he felt nothing," said Tami. "It just happened and it was quick for which I am extremely thankful."

Tyler was a 10 year 4-H member, an Eagle Scout and he loved the outdoors.

"He did join the off-road club at Purdue," said his mother. 

Tyler was only a Freshman but had already made an impression on students.

"He's touched more people than we ever realized," said Tami. "Many of his friends have been sending messages how he was really encouraging them to do well in school."

And although she's never met her son's fellow Boilermakers, their words mean the world to her.

"They're family now," said Tami Stephan. 

Purdue University released a statement saying, "We are saddened by the loss of a promising student and offer our heartfelt sympathies to his family and friends."

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