Memorial for UNH grad killed in Chicago crash draws 300 in Jaffrey
By MEGHAN PIERCE
Union Leader Correspondent | May 12. 2014 9:43PM
lMore than 300 people attended a rosary at St. Patrick Church in Jaffrey Monday for University of New Hampshire graduate Laura LaPlante. (Meghan Pierce Photo)
The Rev. Bill Deschamps said the rosary was said to pray for and remember LaPlante, as well as to thank God for her 26 years.
After the rosary, a reception was held across the street in the St. Patrick School gymnasium. LaPlante was a St. Patrick School alum.
Her parents, Roberta and Dan LaPlante of Hancock, are well-known, active community members, said friend Ruth Wilder, whose daughters attended ConVal High School in Peterborough with LaPlante.
Wilder said the family’s faith and the love of their extended family — who traveled from all over the country to be with them this week — are helping them through this difficult time.
“She was just an amazing person. She was like a light ... She was just a sweet person. She always smiled,” Caracappa said of LaPlante. “So many people were touched by her ... She’ll live on in other people that have been inspired by her.”
“They are in the palm of Jesus’ hand and everyone is lifting them up,” Caracappa said.
LaPlante graduated from ConVal High School in 2006.
She graduated summa cum laude from UNH in 2010 with degrees in both economics and philosophy.
Erik Johnson, 23, was charged with reckless homicide and driving under the influence, Chicago police said.
A Mass of Christian burial for LaPlante is to be celebrated this morning at St. Patrick Church in Jaffrey, followed by a private burial service.
LaPlante’s family has asked that memorial gifts be made to the University of Chicago Law School, the Federalist Society at the University of Chicago, the Friends of UNH Women’s Cross Country/Track & Field, or the Thomas More Society.