(TEMUCO, Chile) — A 22-year-old Kentucky woman teaching English in Chile was found dead in her apartment Saturday, with homicide suspected, her college said in a statement.
Erica Hagan had been in Chile since July, after graduating from Georgetown College in Kentucky. She was teaching English at Colegio Bautista, a private Baptist school.
“Miss Hagan, of Murray, Ky., was found, unresponsive, in her Chile apartment on the campus of Colegio Bautista, Temuco, Chile, on Saturday morning, according to Chilean authorities,” a statement from the school reads. “Officials there are investigating her death as a possible homicide.”
Her devastated family said she was following her calling.
“She loved to travel, she loved to help people,” her aunt, Charlene Martin told ABC television affiliate WSIL-TV. “She was teaching school children English. She was terribly happy.”
Hagan had been documenting her time in Chile — her second trip to the country — on her blog. In her final post Friday, she wrote about the friendliness of the Chilean people.
“God has blessed me with many people that care how I spend my time and don’t want me to be lonely while I’m here,” she wrote. “Everyday I meet more people that invite me to be social with them and I love it! The hardest part is for me to take them up on it by asking them to keep me company during my free time.”
Hagan was scheduled to return home in December.
Instead, friends and family are mourning her loss, and trying to piece together what may have happened.
“This was a phenomenal, well-loved young lady that deserved better,” Martin said. “And she had so much potential, and was going places in her life.”
The Georgetown College Office for Faith and Service will hold a memorial service this week in remembrance of Hagan.
The U.S. State Department is aware of reports of a U.S. citizen’s death in Chile, but cannot comment further, an agency official told ABC News.
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio
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