Slain IU student remembered at memorial

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BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (April 25, 2015) -- Best friends of a slain Indiana University student are opening up about the tragedy and how they are remembering her. Hannah Wilson, 22, died from blunt force trauma to the head. Her body was found in a remote part of Brown County Friday after she'd been reported missing. Police arrested Daniel Messel, 49, of Bloomington and faces a preliminary charge of murder.

[TIMELINE: Hannah Wilson's disappearance]

Hundreds of people packed Alumni Hall on the IU campus for a Hannah Wilson memorial. At one point, people had to wait outside because there was no more room. Family asked that it be private, but Hannah's best friends Meghan Simonett and Liza Mazzocco said the memorial was exactly how Hannah would have wanted it.

"There were tears of course, but she wanted to keep it happy and she didn't want anyone to wear black or be sad. She wanted to celebrate her life in a positive way," said Liza Mazzocco, one of Hannah Wilson's best friends.

Another best friend Meghan Simonett said, "There were so many happy moments and so many jokes and I know I'll be telling those for the rest of my life and she just was a blessing."

Investigators are putting together the timeline that led up to this. Bloomington Police took a missing persons report Friday afternoon. Hours later, Wilson was found in Brown County with head injuries so bad she didn't survive. The Brown County Coroner says Wilson also had injuries to her hands as if she was trying to protect herself. Investigators haven't yet said Messel did, even though he's been preliminarily charged with murder.

"Every person that she met it was a positive impact, she never was one of those people that had issues with friends," said Paige Kelsch, Wilson's friend.

As close friends share memories and perfect strangers offer support, it's a campus coming together to remember one of their own.

Members from her sorority, Gamma Phi Beta, planned to wear lime green and purple for Hannah on Sunday.

IU's Panhellenic Association is taking donations for a memorial fund. The group’s president says it’s a college fund for Hannah’s younger sister, who’s planning to attend IU next year. You can find the page here.

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