Missing West Lafayette woman found dead, husband sent to hospital

Erika Holt
March 15, 2018

A Nobel Prize-winning Purdue professor is in the hospital and his wife is dead, less than a day after family reported them missing.

The Negishi family released a statement Wednesday that said Negishi appeared to be searching for help when deputies found him, and may have been "suffering from an acute state of confusion and shock".

The Ogle County Sheriff's Office says an 80-year-old woman named Smire Negishi was found along with her vehicle in Orchard Hills Landfill.

The sheriff's department said foul play is not suspected, but wouldn't discuss autopsy results.

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Nobel Prize victor Ei-ichi Negishi (82) was transported to a local hospital for treatment after he was spotted walking near Rockford in northern IL, at 5am on Tuesday (local time), the Ogle County Sheriff's Department officials said. His wife, Sumire Negishi, was also missing. Local law enforcement agencies are now leading the investigation.

Eiichi is being treated at a Rockford hospital. Several members of Purdue's chemistry department declined comment.

Negishi won the 2010 Nobel Prize in chemistry for finding a method to create complex organic compounds.

"We are deeply saddened to learn of the death of Sumire Negishi and offer our sincerest sympathies to the Negishi family from the entire Boilermaker family."

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