Heart attack claims life of campus security guard


An alleged sexual assault reportedly occurred in Lindenwood housing on Nov. 23.

ANDREW HONERKAMP | Online Editor `

Lindenwood University Security Officer Marvin Van Witherspoon died on Friday, Nov. 24, after suffering a heart attack.

This was Witherspoon’s second year working at Lindenwood. He taught some of the university’s staff first aid techniques and CPR procedures, and how to use medical devices like defibrillators.

Marvin Witherspoon, security officer| photo by Lindenlink

“He had the biggest heart out of anyone I have ever known,” said his brother Pernell Witherspoon, who is an associate professor oc criminal justice at Lindenwood. “All of the love and calls we have been receiving really speak volumes to who Marvin was.”

Before his work here at the university’s main campus, Marvin Witherspoon worked as captain of the St. Louis Fire Department, where he retired after 22 years of service. After taking some time off, Witherspoon’s love for helping others brought him to Lindenwood.


Even in his death, Witherspoon continues to help those in need because he signed up to donate his organs.

Witherspoon leaves behind his wife of 38 years, Robin Witherspoon, along with his four children Erica, Brittaney, Lauren, and his son Marvin Jr.

Visitation will be held from 9 to 11 a.m. this Saturday, Dec. 2, at West Side Baptist Church, 2677 Dunn Road in Florissant. A meal will follow from 2 to 6 p.m. at DejaVu Cafe, 2805 Target Drive.

The burial will be held at Lake Charles Cemetery, 7775 St. Charles Rock Road, St. Louis, Missouri.

 “Marvin was a wonderful addition to public safety and always looked out for students and staff while he was here,” John Bowman, director of Public Safety and Security, told the Lindenwood Digest. “He brought a wealth of experience and talent to Lindenwood.”

Reporter Wesley Thomas contributed to this report.