WINDSOR, ONT. -- Staff, students and friends gathered for a memorial service for University of Windsor victims of a plane crash in Iran.

The vigil began Friday at 1 p.m. in Alumni Auditorium, on the second floor of the CAW Student Centre.

The Ukranian jetliner crash killed 176 people, including 63 Canadians. Among them were five members of the University of Windsor community.

The university says Zahra Naghibi and spouse Mohammad Abaspour Ghadi; Samira Bashiri and spouse Hamidreza Setareh Kokab; and Pedram Jadidi were among the victims. They were researchers and students at UWindsor.

"Our own students were standing on the very doorstep of discovery in their research careers and their potential was limitless," says UWindsor president Robert Gordon.

In Chatham, municipal flags were lowered to half-staff Friday in honour of the victims of the Ukraine Airlines crash.

Mayor Darrin Canniff ordered the flags lowered. He said in a statement, “Our hearts go out to those whose lives were lost in this terrible event...The anguish of their families is felt throughout our community.”