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Mark E. Sitton G

Mark E. Sitton G, a first-year graduate student in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, committed suicide last Friday at his family's home in Chico, California. He was 23.

A spokesman for the Butte County Sheriff's Department told the MIT Campus Police that they received a phone call from Sitton Friday afternoon and immediately went to his home. When they knocked on the door and received no response, officers entered. They found Sitton's body, a gun and a note, according to the spokesman.

Sitton majored in applied mathematics as an undergraduate at the University of Colorado­Boulder. At MIT, he was a resident of Tang Hall.

Professor Mrigarka Sur, interim head of the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences remembered instructing Sitton in 9.011 [Principles of Neuroscience]. "He sat in the front row of my class and he did well in the course. He was very engaged and he asked interesting questions. He was a pleasant young man," Sur said.

Representatives from Counseling and Support Services, Sur and Professor Gerald E. Schneider PhD '66, head of the department's graduate committee, met yesterday with faculty, staff and students in the department.

Medical Department personnel as well as members of the Counseling Office will be available for all members of the community in need of counseling.

Sitton is survived by his parents, Gary and Judy, and a sister, Holly. The funeral is scheduled for today at the Bidwell Chapel in Chico.