Family, friends remember WSU student with candlelight vigil

Brooke Baures was found dead in a food elevator at a Fountain City restaurant

Hundreds gathered on the Winona State University campus Wednesday night to remember 21-year-old Brooke Baures.

The WSU student from Chetek, Wis. was found dead Monday night in a food elevator at the WingDam Saloon and Grill in Fountain City where she worked.

Members of Baures family, her friends and classmates came together on campus for a candlelight vigil. They met in the center of campus to share memories and celebrate her life. 

Friends of Brooke say no matter where she was, she was able to make an impact on people’s lives. “She was really helpful and such a loving and caring person,” said teammate Jade Donaldson.

“Everyone should remember her as an amazing person and that she did nothing but care for everyone else but herself,” said teammate Veronica Peterson.

Winona State has been offering counseling for students on campus.

Investigators say they got a series of 911 calls Monday night where there was a banquet being held on the second floor of the Wingdam Saloon and Grill.

Police have interviewed about half of the people who were there, but so far no one knows how Baures ended up trapped in the food elevator. Police also say there’s no indications Baures was using the elevator for anything other than transporting food between floors. Police say there is no reason to suspect foul play and this is anything other than an accident.

Fountain City Police Chief Jason Mork says Baures was found entangled in the machine.

Police are asking anyone who was in the restaurant or bar area Monday evening to contact them at (608) 687-4214 because they could be a potential witness.

Baures was a senior majoring in social work at Winona State and also a stand out on the gymnastic team.