Former student dead, community mourns

A funeral was held Wednesday for a former University student who died last week.

Kevin Bahns, of Centerville, was a 25-year-old senior majoring in visual communications technology.

He was found near his home March 15, after committing suicide.

A diabetic since age 4, Bahns had become insulin-dependent and required once-a-day injections, according to his father, Steve Bahns.

He had started to suffer from diabetic attacks over the past few years, Steve said.

Kevin went undiscovered for two days after his last attack in September 2004, which left him unconscious. After being found, he was life-flighted to a Toledo hospital.

“He didn’t seem to be the same after that,” his father said.

While at the University, Kevin was interested in designing prints in large formats, like posters and signs, according to his brother, Chris Bahns.

Following the 2004 diabetic attack, Kevin continued with his studies at BGSU. Though emotional burdens may have existed, he was not the type to quit or ask for help, his brother said.

“Kevin had a lot of pride,” Chris said. “He didn’t want to bother others with his problems.”

His father believes the complications from diabetes “finally got to be too much for him.”

Steve said BGSU has been “tremendous in supporting [Kevin], but he just seemed to gradually pull away from all those people who loved and supported him.”

Bahns lived in Offenhauer East until spring break, according to Nick Burns, who lives on the same floor.

Bahns’ reason for not returning after the break is unknown. Burns said police officers questioned him and other neighbors on Bahns’ whereabouts a few days after students returned to campus.

He said residents were informed of Kevin’s suicide later that week in a floor meeting.

“I think that one of the things the University might ask, and friends might ask of each other, is to look after those we know,” said Kim McBroom, assistant vice president of marketing and communications.

“Encourage students to find someone to talk to,” she added, citing the Counseling Center as a place students can always turn to for a friend.

Chris similarly warns others facing problems to allow people who care to continue to be a part of their lives, and to allow them to help.

The number of people from BGSU who attended the funeral in Centerville surprised the family.

“He cared a lot about BG,” Steve said.

Remembering Kevin Donations can be made to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, 1293-H Lyons Rd., Dayton, OH 45458.

Editor-in-Chief Bob Moser contributed to this report.