The Geneva College community continues to be deeply concerned about the disappearance of 18-year-old freshman engineering major Devon Minor. There is an active and official investigation being led by the Beaver Falls Police Department. Geneva College Director of Security Dennis Damazo notes that local, county, state and federal officials are all part of the investigation to find Devon.
In response to Devon’s disappearance, the Geneva College community has responded with outpourings of concern and prayers. Small prayer groups have gathered in residence halls and academic buildings all over campus. Larger prayer gatherings, particularly in Pearce and Memorial residence halls, have packed the lounges. In addition, an all-campus prayer time for Devon was held in John H. White Chapel and students, faculty and staff have been praying corporately for both Devon and his family each week during the college’s Wednesday chapel. The campus community has also been donning red ribbons, Devon’s favorite color, in support and concern.
On Facebook, Geneva students created a “Praying for Devon Minor” group instructing users to pray for Devon’s safe return. Support of this group has been shown with more than 2,900 people “liking” the page. Supportive Bible verses, prayers and hopes for Devon’s safety continue to be posted on the page’s wall by friends, family and fellow students.
During a previous chapel, Provost Ken Carson introduced the campus to Devon’s family and the officers working on the case. He thanked them and the agencies they represent for their continued work and diligence in the investigation. Dr. Carson also announced the establishment of Geneva’s new anonymous tip-line. He encouraged any students with information regarding Devon to speak with security or to call the anonymous tip-line at 724-847-5555.
Four of Devon’s family members had come to Beaver Falls from their home in the Philadelphia area, and the community generously donated to assist them with their expenses during that time. Though we continue to pray for Devon’s return, he has missed too many classes to be able to complete the spring semester and, for this reason, Devon’s family has moved Devon’s belongings from his room in Pearce and taken them back home. This in no way indicates that the investigation has been closed or that hope has been lost, only that Devon has been withdrawn from this semester.
Several resources are available to students struggling with Devon’s disappearance. Any student who needs assistance is encouraged to contact the counseling center or speak with faculty and staff who can assist with processing these emotions. “While we should not forget Devon or his family, we need to continue with our daily lives,” says Director of Campus Ministries Keith Martel. “God calls us to faithfulness in all areas of life during times of great joy as well as times of sorrow.”
As the community prays and multiple public safety agencies are investigating Devon’s absence, Director of Security Dennis Damazo reminds the community to contact the Beaver Falls Police Department at 724-846-7000, Geneva College Security at 724-846-9632 or call Geneva’s anonymous tip-line at 724-847-5555 if they have any leads regarding his whereabouts. Anonymous notes addressed to Dennis Damazo may also be dropped in the on-campus mail slot in the mail room.
Geneva College Provost Ken Carson speaks for many when he says “One of the strengths of the Geneva community is its caring people. We are deeply concerned about Devon and are praying for his safety. It is our hope that he is soon found to be safe.”
Geneva has earned the approval of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA) for its fundraising and financial practices.