First-year Rowan student, Zachary Lang, passes away


This story was updated at 4:31 p.m. on March 8/Additional reporting by Rhiannon Bulaga

First-year music industry major Zachary Lang passed away on Thursday, according to an email sent to students Monday, signed by Dean of Students Richard Jones.

Lang’s death was sudden, says Vice President for University Relations Joe Cardona. The university was not able to provide any additional details surrounding Lang’s passing.

“Of course we are all extremely saddened by Zachary’s passing,” says Head of Strings and Assistant Professor Timothy John Schwarz. Schwarz taught Lang in his music theory class. “I did not know him very well, but from what I saw he [was] a kind and sensitive student. I deeply regret that I will not be able to work with him from this point.”

The university sent a subsequent email later in the evening on Monday, offering students the opportunity to speak with counselors at the Wellness Center about having lost a friend and classmate.

“The death of a fellow member of the Rowan community impacts all of us, and you are not alone,” the email read. “We encourage you to pay particular attention to your own reactions, as well as those of your peers, in the coming weeks. If you or someone you know is having difficulty coping or ‘just don’t feel right,’ please visit or contact Counseling and Psychological Services, located in the Wellness Center at Winans Hall.”

In the hours following the announcement of Lang’s passing, dozens of friends posted their farewells and memories to his Facebook page, which remains active.

“Lang was an amazing and outstanding individual,” says Nick Bianchini in a Facebook message. He described Lang as his best friend. “A smile cheek-to-cheek was nothing less than ordinary for [him]. If you had the chance to exchange words with him, your day would have been made, just off his demeanor.”

Services for Lang will be held on Tuesday, March 8, at 1:30 p.m., at The Catholic Church of St. Mary in Cherry Hill, according to Jones’ email. In lieu of flowers, the family wishes donations be made to JCC Camps at Medford, c/o Scholarship Fund Katz, 1301 Springdale Road Cherry Hill, NJ 08003.

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