Fan dies at football game

By Sara Adams

NIU supporter George Wilkins died while attending the NIU football game Saturday, said Melanie Magara, assistant vice president for Public Affairs.

Wilkins was attending the game with Athletic Director Jim Phillips before suffering from a heart attack. According an article by the Chicago Sun-Times, Phillips administered CPR but Wilkins had stopped breathing by the time he was brought down to an ambulance.

Phillips said Wilkins was a friend who would do anything for you.

“We miss him already,” Phillips said. “Our hearts are with his incredible wife, Fran and their wonderful children. NIU is a better place because of George and the entire Wilkins family.”

NIU President John Peters considered Wilkins a good friend.

“George and Fran are family-first people who invited NIU into that family,” Peters said. “They showed all of us that strength of loyalty and depth of feeling need not be measured by years.”

“When George believed in something, he believed with his whole heart, and all of us are humbled by how deeply he believed in our students and our athletic program,” Phillips said. “George supported us with his presence, his confidence and his unflagging enthusiasm for NIU as an institution.”

Visitation for Wilkins is scheduled for 2 to 8 p.m. Thursday in Culver, Ind. The funeral will be held at 11 a.m. Friday in Culver, Ind.