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University of Iowa student dies, extreme weather a suspected factor

photo courtesy Michael Belz
photo courtesy Michael Belz
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IOWA CITY, Iowa (KGAN) - A University of Iowa student from Cedar Rapids died at the hospital after he was found outside of a university building in the cold early Wednesday morning.

A spokesperson for the UI said Gerald Belz, a first-year pre-medicine student, was found unresponsive behind Halsey Hall around 2:48 a.m., a building located across the street from the Iowa Memorial Union.

Belz's father Michael reached out to CBS2/FOX 28 to say, "Based on comments the family received from two doctors and the police captain this morning, they told us multiple times that zero alcohol was found in his system."

Police are still investigating the exact cause of death, but police believe the cold was a factor. No foul play is suspected.

A list of resources for students can be found on the university's safety and support website or by contacting one of these offices:

  • University Counseling Services (319-335-7294)
  • Student Care and Assistance (319-335-1162) or
  • UI Employee Assistance Program (319-335-2085)
  • Johnson County Crisis Center (319-351-0140)

Belz graduated from Cedar Rapids Kennedy High School. A tweet from Principal Jason Kline said that the high school is also offering counseling services.

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