But on May 3, that picture-perfect image was shattered when Love was discovered in her Charlottesville, Va. apartment, lying facedown in a pool of blood. Police arrested Huguely, her one-time boyfriend and fellow fourth-year University of Virginia student, and quickly charged him with first-degree murder.
Now, days after Love's death, troubling details about their volatile romance are coming to light. And many people in quiet Charlottesville are asking – could her death have been prevented?
In the new issue of PEOPLE, sources say teammates, coaches and university officials may have missed warning signs. They also say Huguely – who grew up in a wealthy suburb of Washington, D.C., and remains in jail – left behind a trail of misbehavior. More troubling, students share rumors that Huguely had been previously violent with Love.
The two young people met as freshmen at UVA. Members of the men and women's lacrosse team, they were often seen socializing with teammates and a host of friends. Eventually they began a romance – which took a dark turn as early as last year, when Huguely reportedly beat up a teammate who was rumored to have kissed Love.
As authorities continue their investigation, UVA students are still reeling, asking one another whether something could have been done to save their friend.
For more about Love, Huguely and the tragic events leading up to Love's murder – and intimate family photos – pick up the new issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday