The 2019 Midwest Winter is officially being described as “deadly.”
On Wednesday, January 30th, 2019, Gerald Belz, an 18-year-old University of Iowa student, was found unresponsive by campus police. The university student transported to the hospital where he was confirmed dead due freezing temperatures. This death is considered the eighth life to be taken by the 2019 winter.
Originally from Grand Rapids, Iowa, Belz, was in his second semester at the university and was studying to become a cardiologist. His father remembers his son as a “quiet and tough guy.”
After learning of his son’s loss, the university had issued a condolence statement to which several thousand had responded with memories of Gerald. He father was stunned to learn that he had so many more friends, saying “He had more friends than I was aware of. He didn’t bring many friends over to the house, but we knew he had lots of friends.” They are truly saddened by his death.
The 2019 winter is proving to be deadly and dangerous for all residents. The National Weather Service has confirmed the windchill is bringing temperatures as low as -65 degrees Fahrenheit and residents are being warned to stay inside.
The National Weather Service in Des Moines, Iowa, is seriously warning residents about breathing in the cold air, adding that anyone outside should “minimize talking” and cover their mouth in order to protect their lungs.
They added, “This is the coldest air many of us will have ever experienced. It’s not a case of ‘Meh, it’s Iowa during winter and this cold happens.’ These are record-breaking cold air temperatures, with wind chill values not seen in the 21st century in Iowa.”
Please be praying for Midwest residents as this winter is truly devastating to families. Our prayers go out to Gerald’s family and everyone who knew him. We pray that the weather will warm up soon.