Students at two schools brought together by tragedy reflected on the loss of a classmate Friday afternoon by lighting candles, reciting Psalms and making positive resolutions in her memory.

One day after the apprehension of the prime suspect in the May 6 murder of Wesleyan University junior Johanna Justin-Jinich, students joined faculty members for a courtyard ceremony at the Middletown, Conn., school. They had spent the previous day locked in their dorm rooms out of officials’ concerns for their safety, while authorities mounted a nationwide manhunt for suspect Stephen Morgan.

As they made their way to and from the packed assembly, several stopped by a “Tent of Comfort” erected by Chabad-Lubavitch of Glastonbury, which coordinates activities for Jewish members of the academic community. There they found Rabbi Yosef Wolvovsky and four yeshiva students from New Haven passing out bottles of water and Shabbat candles, and offering the opportunity to do a good deed.

“Our main task is just to be here,” said Wolvovsky, who also opened up his Chabad House to any students who wanted to get away from campus for the weekend, “to show solidarity and stand in unity with the students, faculty and Wesleyan community.”

A delegation of students from New York University – where police believe Justin-Jinich’s alleged killer met her during a 2007 summer program – made the trip to Connecticut for the memorial. Led by Rabbi Yehuda Sarna of the Edgar M. Bronfman Center for Jewish Student Life, they went to show solidarity with their Wesleyan counterparts as another memorial service took place on the NYU campus.

At that gathering, said Rabbi Dov Yonah Korn of the Chabad House serving NYU, students lit candles, said verses of Psalms and spoke about Justin-Jinich, a granddaughter of a Holocaust survivor.

“We came together most importantly to show that even though we weren’t connected with her on a practical level, we share a strong Jewish connection,” explained Korn. “We didn’t want the day to pass without stopping and giving the tragedy the attention that it deserves. Most importantly, we committed ourselves to try to strengthen goodness and kindness to uproot the kind of darkness that would allow such things to occur to any good person.”

For his part, Wesleyan University president Michael S. Roth said that it “was very moving to be together in our grief.”

“We return to the rhythms of our campus lives with the memory of our loss still very fresh,” he said. “We turn again, and we remember. May Johanna’s memory be a blessing to us all.”