More than 150 students, family members and faculty attended a memorial service for Joseph Quandt ’15 at Anabel Taylor Hall Wednesday. Attendees remembered Quandt — who died of natural causes on Feb. 27 — as a bright, quirky and selfless young man who had a passion for urban and regional studies and aspired to make the world a more just place.
Angela née Graf, Quandt’s mother, described Quandt as “someone who could find the good in everything and everyone.”
She said that, even at a young age, Quandt knew “everything about everything” and was not afraid to to share his knowledge and help to fix others’ mistakes.
Susan H. Murphy ’73 Ph.D. ’94, vice president of student and academic services, shared portions of Quandt’s admissions essay, which she said illustrated his determination, sense of humor and passion for urban studies.
“I did not have the honor of knowing Joe personally but I’ve had a chance to talk to Joe’s classmates … and I realized indeed how fortunate we are at Cornell to have had Joe among us for these past couple of years,” Murphy said. “He was a remarkable young man who enriched Cornell greatly during his time here, and we are in a better place because he chose to call Cornell his home.”
Pike Oliver, senior lecturer of city and regional planning, shared comments from students about Quandt’s character at the memorial. When he asked students in the College of Architecture, Art and Planning community to choose one word to describe Quandt’s “essence,” responses included words such as “admirable, compassionate, genuine and wise,” he said.
Graf urged attendees to keep part of Quandt alive in the community and to continue creating the “ripples” he made at Cornell by extending them out beyond their lives.
Garrett James Craig-Lucas ’16 said Quandt had a profound influence on the people in his life.
“I met him after I got my acceptance, and he was one of the people that really drew me to the [AAP] program,” Craig-Lucas said. “He was compassionate, really easy to connect with and exciting.”
Camille Mangiaratti ’16, a friend of Quandt, remembered her friend as “an incredibly genuine, smart, funny, cynical person who we are going to miss every single day forever.
“I can’t imagine a day where I won’t think of him,” Mangiaratti said.
Other friends also noted Quandt’s value as a friend.
“I had some really tough times freshman year, and he was always there. You could just call him up at 3 a.m. and he would always come visit you and talk about anything,” said Matt Munsey ’15, a photographer for The Sun. “He always had an ear for someone who wanted to talk and who was his friend.”
The service included displays of photo collages of Quandt from various points during his life, as well as musical interludes by three of Quandt’s friends.
Original Author: Alexa Davis