A service celebrating the life of Claire VanLandingham, the U.S. Navy dentist who was shot and killed in Lake Forest on January 3, is planned for January 13 in Lawrence, Kansas. Her family has chosen two organizations for anyone who would like to make a donation in her honor: Kansas Big Brothers Big Sisters, and the Douglas County Dental Clinic, a non-profit that provides dental care to underserved populations in Douglas County, Kansas.
In a heartbreaking video from March 2016, shown above, VanLandingham is seen promoting an event to raise awareness about domestic violence. The video was first reported in the Chicago Tribune.
“One in every three women has experienced partner violence, and here in the United States alone more than 23 million women have been raped,” VanLandingham said in the video, which was produced for the University of Louisville chapter of the American Association of Women Dentists. “In a society so violent, have you ever been afraid to walk alone at night? We don’t think you should have to. Take Back The Night is a national organization that seeks to end domestic violence, dating violence, sexual abuse and all other forms of power-based abuse. We seek to create healthy relationships and safe communities. Violence against anyone is unacceptable.”
VanLandingham, 27, was a Navy lieutenant who worked at the dental clinic in the Lovell Federal Health Care Center near the Naval Station Great Lakes in North Chicago, 4.4 miles from where she lived in Lake Forest. She graduated from the University of Louisville School of Dentistry last year.
She was shot multiple times at 6:20 a.m. on January 3 in the parking lot of her apartment building on Western Avenue in Lake Forest, and was pronounced dead at Northwestern Medicine Lake Forest Hospital. The Lake Forest Police Department believe she was shot by her former boyfriend Ryan Zike, 33, of Louisville, who then took his own life with a single gunshot to his head.