A student committed suicide by lying down in front of a freight train near Towner's Woods park this weekend.
Martin Alvord, 22, a Visual Communication Design student at Kent State, was found on the railroad tracks running along side the park and within 200 feet of where Ravenna Road crosses the tracks on Sunday afternoon. The park is located in Franklin Township.
Portage County Sheriff's Lt. Greg Johnson said the engineer and conductor aboard the Norfolk Southern train saw Alvord lying on the tracks and making no attempt to get out of its way as the train approached.
Johnson said the locomotive crew locked up its brakes but couldn't stop the 8,551 ton train.
"He did leave a note," Johnson said.
Alvord was pronounced dead at the scene just before 4 p.m. The Akron native was living on Ohio Avenue near campus while he attended school. Alvord also was studying studio art.
Johnson said Alvord had dinner with family the weekend prior and didn't exhibit any signs of depression or suicidal thoughts.
"From talking to his friends, everybody described him as being quiet, soft spoken, but a hard worker," Johnson said. "He was giving off absolutely no indicators."
Alvord's friends at Kent State are planning a vigil for him tonight at 7 p.m. at the rock on front campus, Kent Wired reported.
Last year, Portage County with 25 completed suicides — the most since the county started keeping track in 1965.
For Kent State, Alvord is the third student to die this year under abnormal circumstances. In October, Pennsylvania native James Barnes in his campus dorm room. In March, Rachael Carlina "Carli" Woodruff was while driving home to Loveland, OH, on spring break.