Princeton University freshman dies after struck by Dinky


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James Li, a Princeton University freshman and a member of the Princeton High School Class of 2023, died after he was struck by the Princeton Dinky shuttle train at the Faculty Road crossing Feb. 16.

The incident occurred around 2:15 p.m. while the shuttle train was on its way to the Princeton Junction train station, according to published reports in The Daily Princetonian.

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W. Rochelle Calhoun, the university’s Vice President for Student Life, announced the fatality in a message to the Princeton University community Feb. 16.

“It is with deep regret that I write to inform you about a tragic loss to our community. Earlier today, James Li ’27 died after an incident at the NJTransit crossing on Faculty Road,” Calhoun wrote.

Few details are known about the incident, which is under investigation, Calhoun wrote. The announcement directed Princeton University students to on-campus resources for counseling and support.

The Princeton Public Schools also is offering counseling and support in the wake of Li’s death, said Princeton High School Principal (PHS) Cecilia Birge. School district officials reached out to the entire PHS community via email Feb. 17, she said.

“We called the teachers who knew him well. We have ensured students are aware that counseling services are available, as is access to our Wellness Center,” Birge said.

“The Wellness Center will be observing a ‘quiet week’ next week, providing a space for students to find comfort should they need it,” Birge said.

Faculty Road was closed between Alexander Street and Washington Road for an investigation immediately after the incident. Faculty Road was reopened shortly after 5 a.m. Feb. 17.

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