Jonathan Hunn ’15 — a natural resources major and co-founder of the Cornell Environmental Collaborative — died on Nov. 10 in West Bloomfield, N.Y. He was 22.
In the spring, Hunn walked with the graduating class of 2015 at Cornell. He remained on campus this semester to finish a few last credits, according to Nyle Taylor ’15, Hunn’s freshman and sophomore year roommate.
On campus, Hunn was involved with environmental and sustainability groups. Friends said he was passionate about making the campus greener and brought people together through efforts towards a common goal to benefit the entire community.
Taylor said Hunn “was always quick to smile or laugh and he was quick to make others do the same.” He described Hunn as a great listener and confidante, who would “drop everything” to help a friend.
“You could always find him chatting with someone new in one of the coffee shops in collegetown or on campus,” Taylor said. “He seemed to make a new friend every day. I think people were just drawn to his kind and honest demeanor.”
Zoe Carlson ’15, a close friend of Hunn, said he “loved to just get out and do things” — including gorge jumping in the rain, going to the Ithaca Apple Harvest Festival and seeing obscure indie bands. Carlson also remembered Hunn’s passion for music and recounted how he organized groups to see bands perform in the Ithaca area.
“He would always offer to drive in his crappy car that you weren’t sure was even going to make it to the venue,” she said.
Hunn taught himself to play the guitar and could often be found learning new songs, according to friends.
Wesley Rogers ’14, who played intramural soccer with Hunn and lived with him in fall 2013, described him as a genuine and kind person.
“He was always down to meet new people and make new friends, and he could start a conversation with anyone,” Rogers said. “Some of the best memories I have of him were the nights we would all make dinner together in the apartment and just hang out.”
Rogers said Hunn loved to be outdoors and was particularly enthusiastic about rock climbing.
Lauren Harris ’15 added that Hunn was always ready to try something new and loved sharing his passions with others.
“One of my fondest memories with Jon was visiting him at the Cornell Biological Field Station during a summer in Ithaca,” Harris said. “We spent the night with his fellow interns at the Taste of Syracuse music and food festival and the next morning we went for a sunrise kayak on Oneida Lake.”
Hunn will be remembered for his contributions to the Cornell community, including the founding of ECO, his work with the Cornell Cooperative Extension, research with the Cornell Biological Field Station and additions as a field research technician to the Department of Natural Resources.
Hunn’s memorial service will be held at a later date, according to an obituary printed Sunday in the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle. Friends and family of Hunn started a crowdsourcing fundraiser on Crowdrise for the Hunn family, which may be used for memorial services. The fundraiser has already raised over $5,300 of its $10,000 goal as of Monday evening.
University Resources: Members of the Cornell community seeking support can call Gannett Health Services’ Counseling and Psychological Services (607-255-5155), EARS’ peer counselors (607-255-3277), the Faculty Staff Assistance Program (607-255-2673), the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-8255) or find additional resources at caringcommunity.cornell.edu.