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Medical examiner releases cause of death for Sophia Jones ’27

Flowers frame University chapel in the distance.
Louisa Gheorghita / The Daily Princetonian

Content Warning: The following article includes mention of student death and suicide. 

University Counseling services are available at 609-258-3141, and the Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available 24/7 at 988 or +1 (800) 273-TALK (8255). A Crisis Text Line is also available in the United States; text HOME to 741741. Students can contact residential college staff and the Office of Religious Life for other support and resources.


The Office of the Medical Examiner for Mercer County has ruled the death of first-year undergraduate Sophia Jones ’27 a suicide, according to an autopsy report shared with The Daily Princetonian. Jones passed away on campus Nov. 29.

Jones is the fifth Princeton student to have taken their own life in the past three years.

“Our entire community is impacted by this tragedy and our hearts are heavy. We share our deepest condolences with Sophia’s family and friends,” Vice President for Campus Life W. Rochelle Calhoun wrote in an email to students Nov. 30.

A dedicated ballet dancer and student, Jones was a prospective molecular biology major in Yeh College.

In December, when her parents were asked what they wanted Jones to be most remembered by, her father, Ben Jones ’95, highlighted “her joy and the joy she took in helping others.” Her mother, Juliet Sorensen ’95, told the ‘Prince,’ “her incandescent spirit.”

“You knew when she was in the room with you,” her father noted. “And the room was warmer and richer for her presence.”


Born in Chicago on Feb. 20, 2005, Sophia Jones finished high school in Flekke, Norway and trained as a dancer throughout her childhood and into her time at Princeton. She danced in four pieces in November as a member of Princeton University Ballet (PUB).

“Sophia was a treasured member of our company and we are all grateful to have known her,” read a Dec. 2 statement from PUB, shared online and with the ‘Prince.’ “She had a contagious joy that impacted everyone around her and her spirit was unfaltering — from late night rehearsals to long days backstage she never ceased to exercise humor, kindness, and warmth and inspired us all as both a talented dancer and cherished friend.”

“She was a really easy person to talk to,” Jones’s friend and roommate Riley O’Hare ’27 told the ‘Prince’ in December. “She was a great listener. She was great at striking up a conversation with anyone.”

In addition to her parents, Jones is survived by her younger brother Hugh, and her younger sister Thea. 

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In Calhoun’s Nov. 30 email sharing the news of Jones’s passing, she invited community members to a gathering that evening to “gather, reflect, and support one another.”

In a written comment to the ‘Prince,’ Assistant Vice President for Communications Michael Hotchkiss referred the ‘Prince’ to resources outlined in the Nov. 30 email and in a Dec. 6 article published by the University.

Annie Rupertus is a head News editor at the ‘Prince.’

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