South Carolina

USC plans memorial to prof

The University of South Carolina’s trustees Friday approved an on-campus memorial to slain professor Raja Fayad.

The university held a memorial service in early April for Fayad, who was killed shot and killed Feb. 5 by his ex-wife, Sunghee Kwon, in USC’s public health building on Assembly Street. Kwon then killed herself.

At the memorial service, a Lebanese cedar tree was planted in Fayad’s memory near the Arnold School of Medicine, where the Lebanese native was an associate professor of exercise science.

The plaque, approved Friday, will include two passages.

The first, written by his colleagues, says, “His kindness knew no bounds and he always saw the good in others. He was the consummate helper to anyone who asked and to many, many who didn’t. He changed the thinking and the lives of so many students with his exceptional teaching.”

The second passage is a poem written in 1912 by Lebanese-American poet, writer and artist Khalil Gibran: “The heart’s affections are divided like the branches of the cedar tree; if the tree loses one strong branch; it will suffer but it does not die; it will pour out all its vitality into the next branch so that it will grow and fill the empty place.”

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