Remembering Levi Duclos
Levi Duclos ’15 passed away on January 9 while hiking the Emily Proctor trail in Vermont. In an email sent to the Reed student body on January 12, Mike Brody explained that Duclos was hiking with his dog three miles from the trailhead when he broke his leg, leaving him immobilized in freezing temperatures overnight. He was found the next day. Duclos was 19.
Duclos lived in Scholz, where his outgoing personality helped him build a community of friends. Before coming to Reed, Duclos, who was from New Haven, Vermont, lived and taught English in Nepal for two months. He also was an avid hiker and traveler.
On Saturday, friends and extended family remembered Duclos at a memorial service in Reed’s chapel. All who attended were invited to speak freely about Duclos’ legacy. Multiple students explained that Duclos, who made a point of reaching out to others, was the first person they met at Reed. “Levi was the first or second person I met here, in line for orientation,” said Hugh Schlesinger ’14. “Then he turned around and met Rennie [Meyers ‘15]. Then he introduced us, as if he’d known both of us for a long time,” Schlesinger remembered.
Friends also described his love for adventure, guitar, and making people laugh. “One time Levi came into the Scholz common room with a lemon,” friend Theo Sangenitto ’15 laughed, “and he said ‘Dude, look how gnarly I am,’ and he started squeezing the lemon in his eye… You could tell it hurt, but he was always trying to make us laugh.”
Duclos’ friends also honored him through poetry and music. Sophia Helverson ’15, who organized the service with Lisa Frueh ’15, read Jack London’s Credo, “I would rather be ashes than dust…,” while Biology Professor Sarah Schaack read a poem of her own composition that she dedicated to Duclos. Friends also performed “You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere” by Bob Dylan and “You Can Have It All” by Yo La Tengo, Duclos’ favorite band. After the service, attendees were encouraged to sign a scrapbook to be given to Duclos’ family.