Georgetown Graduate Dies in Dupont Circle Fire



Recent Georgetown graduate Nina May Brekelmans (GRD ‘15) died in an electrical fire in her home near Dupont Circle June 3. She was 25.

Michael Patrick McLoughlin, 24, also died in the fire, and five others were injured.

Although Sherri Kimbel, a representative from the Office of Councilmember Jack Evans (D-Ward 2), identified both victims as Georgetown students at an ANC2F meeting Wednesday, McLoughlin was a University of Maryland graduate.

Brekelmans graduated from Georgetown last month with a Master of Arts in Arab Studies and hoped to live and work in the Middle East after graduation. Brekelmans, who was proficient in Arabic, was recently awarded a Fulbright grant to conduct research on female distance runners in Jordan. She received a bachelor’s degree in Arabic from Dartmouth College, where she graduated summa cum laude in 2012.

While at Georgetown, Brekelmans involved herself in the community, training as a distance runner with the Georgetown Running Club, serving as treasurer of Georgetown Women in International Affairs and interning at the Muslim Chaplaincy.

School of Foreign Service Interim Dean James Reardon-Anderson and Center for Contemporary Arab Studies Director Osama Abi-Mershed shared the news with the Georgetown community this afternoon in a campus-wide email.

“We are deeply saddened by this news and know that it is difficult for the many members of the Georgetown community who knew Nina,” Reardon-Anderson and Abi-Mershed wrote. “Please join our Georgetown community in remembering Nina’s family and friends in your thoughts and prayers during this time.”

Full obituary to come at



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One Comment

  1. From one Georgetown grad student to another, RIP. I didn’t know Berkelmans personally, but she sounds like an amazing person.

    Rest assured, you will not be forgotten. You have many friends, and the legacy you have left at Georgetown will continue to inspire others. For me, personally, we have similar interests (although mine are in Asia while hers are in the Middle East), but either way, thank you for showing me what can be accomplished in a young life.

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