Jelani Day timeline
Saturday marks one month since Jelani Day went missing, a case that has brought national attention to Bloomington-Normal. Here's a look at key dates in the case.
Tuesday, Aug. 24
Jelani Day, 25, is last seen entering the Beyond/Hello cannabis dispensary at 1515 N. Veterans Parkway, Bloomington. The Danville native who ran track at Alabama A&M is attending Illinois State to get his master’s degree in speech pathology and is a member of the fraternity Omega Psi Phi. A security camera image places him there at about 9:15 a.m. Authorities later release a security camera image of Day at 7:20 a.m. at ISU’s Bone Student Center.
Wednesday, Aug. 25
Day's family reports him missing to police. They say they last talked to him on Aug. 23. He had not attended class for several days.
Thursday, Aug. 26
Day's white 2010 Chrysler 300 is found in a wooded area in Peru, about 60 miles north of Bloomington. His clothing is also found inside.
Friday, Aug. 27
ISU asks students to contact Bloomington authorities with tips about Day. Students are encouraged to contact Student Counseling Services. Over the weekend, students also distribute fliers seeking information.
Monday, Aug. 30
Day's family sets up a GoFundMe account to provide resources for the search. His mother also announces a $25,000 reward.
Tuesday, Aug. 31
The Bloomington Police Department releases information about Day's last known whereabouts and asks for information about those who saw him or the vehicle.
Wednesday, Sept. 1
Day's mother, Carmen Bolden Day, and others scour the area around Beyond/Hello for clues. "I'm just pleading with whoever knows anything or whoever has him, just let him go," she says.
Friday, Sept. 3
More than 100 people gather in the Bone Student Center in support of the search effort. "I want you to know, Jelani is not dead and we will find him," his mother tells those gathered there.
Saturday, Sept. 4
Authorities find a body just off the south bank of the Illinois River east of the Illinois 251 bridge in LaSalle County. Officials say it could take weeks to identify the body.
Monday, Sept. 20
Bloomington police in a statement say they are still actively investigating the case, including collecting and analyzing physical and digital evidence, as well as interviewing witnesses.
Tuesday, Sept. 21
“In consultation with Jelani’s family, we will continue to provide support to them and as a community, I ask that we all provide support to each other," she says.
At a city council meeting in Danville, Mayor Rickey Williams Jr. pleads for information.
"We always say here, see something, hear something, know something, say something. Someone out there has seen, heard or knows something," Williams said. "Please, please bring this young man home if he's still alive; and if for some reason he's not, please let his family know that so that they might have some peace."
Thursday, Sept. 23
The LaSalle County coroner identifies the body found Sept. 4 in the Illinois River as that of Jelani Day.
“There are no words to clearly communicate our devastation. ...Our hearts are broken," Day's mother says in a Facebook post.
Authorities say a cause of death has not been determined and is pending further investigation and toxicology testing.
Saturday, Sept. 25
A memorial is planned in Uptown Circle in Normal. Organizers had initially planned a protest asking for the FBI to become involved in the case.
Sources: Associated Press, Illinois State University, Danville Commercial-News
Continuing Pantagraph coverage in the Jelani Day case
Jelani "J.J." Day, 25, was last seen on Aug. 24 entering the Beyond/Hello dispensary in Bloomington. Authorities on Sept. 23 said his body was found in the Illinois River.
Among the attendees is the Rev. Jesse Jackson. This burial comes 10 days after the family held a funeral service at Danville High School to honor the Illinois State University grad student.
Anyone with information on Jelani Day's death is asked to call 815-433-2161.
Hallie Bezner, attorney for Day’s family, also told The Pantagraph: “I think that people read between the lines to try to have some conspiracy that doesn't exist."
State law enforcement officials told The Pantagraph on Sunday that DNA backlogs did not slow down confirmation of the body found in the Illinois River last month as Jelani Day.
Teachers at Danville High School saw great potential in Julani Day.
During Jelani Day's celebration of life, his four siblings sing a tribute backs by a community choir. READ MORE HERE.
Carmen Bolden Day says to work does not end with laying her son to rest. READ MORE HERE.
“You’re not going to forget his name because I’m not going to let you,” Carmen Bolden Day said on Saturday.
Pantagraph journalists spent last week in Danville speaking to those who knew Day, and they described him as big-hearted, hard-working and on a path to success.
“He will never be forgotten, Dr. Jelani J.J. Day,” mother Carmen Bolden Day said at the event. "They're going to remember Jelani's name forever.”
BLOOMINGTON — A change.org petition asking for state and federal authorities to investigate the death of Illinois State University graduate st…
The LaSalle County Sheriff's Office announced this afternoon a person of interest sought by Peru Police has been cleared by investigators and is not a suspect in the case.
Bloomington police Officer John Fermon during a press conference discusses the search for Jelani Day, the Illinois State University student wh…
Missing ISU student identified after body found near Peru. READ MORE HERE.
A body found floating in the Illinois River in LaSalle County has been identified as that of missing Illinois State University graduate studen…
Authorities on Thursday said a body discovered in a river nearly three weeks ago has been confirmed as a graduate student missing from Illinoi…
Jelani Day, a 25-year-old graduate student at ISU, was last seen the morning of Aug. 24 walking into the Beyond / Hello in Bloomington, accord…
"We always say here, see something, hear something, know something, say something. Someone out there has seen, heard or knows something."
BLOOMINGTON — The president of Illinois State University during her annual address to the campus community spoke about a graduate student who …
BLOOMINGTON — A GoFundMe page to raise money for finding a missing Illinois State University student has generated $12,503 as of Monday.
BLOOMINGTON — The search for a missing Illinois State University graduate student has continued into its fourth week.
Authorities are investigating after body was recovered Saturday morning from the Illinois River near LaSalle-Peru.
"I want you to know, Jelani is not dead and we will find him," said his mother, speaking to a crowd of supporters on Friday night.
Carmen Bolden Day, mother of missing Illinois State University student Jelani Day, speaks at an event Friday night in support of the search for him.
BLOOMINGTON — For Carmen Bolden Day, no amount of money is worth keeping if she can’t have her son back.
Carmen Bolden Day, mother of Jelani Day, recounts the last phone call she had with her son prior to his disappearance. Several people gathered…
BLOOMINGTON — Police, family and friends continue to search for Illinois State University graduate student Jelani Day after he went missing la…
BLOOMINGTON — Bloomington police said Friday that officers are continuing their search for Illinois State University graduate student Jelani J…
Jelani J.J. Day was reported missing Wednesday by his family and an Illinois State University faculty member.