A Statement From University Of Colorado Chancellor G.P. "Bud" Peterson Regarding The Death Of CU-Boulder Student David Parrish

Published: March 31, 2008

Last week, while CU students were enjoying Spring Break, we lost a dear member of our community. CU junior David Parrish of Boulder was killed last Wednesday in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico while trying to stop two men from robbing his mother – CU instructor Janet Graaff. David was a geography major, a talented photographer and artist, and a student with a strong commitment to understanding other cultures and peoples – in short, everything we could hope for from a CU student.

Janet Graaff is also a treasured member of our CU family in her role as lecturer in our Leeds School of Business and in the College of Engineering and Applied Science. Our thoughts and prayers are with Ms. Graaff; with David's Father, Steven, and with his family, friends and CU classmates. A loss of any one of our students is deeply felt here, but the loss of such a heroic, visionary student is nearly unbearable.

Young people like David Parrish are the heart and soul of CU, and our community is diminished in incalculable ways by his loss. As our campus mourns his passing, the offices of Victim Assistance and Counseling and Psychological Services are ready to assist those who might be personally affected by this horrific crime. We will also place the full resources of the university at the ready for David's family.

Finally, I would ask that we all reflect upon David's life and positive contributions to our community by renewing our commitment to creating a non-violent campus, and to fostering the cross-cultural, multi-national understanding that David sought for himself in his time here as a CU student.

G.P. "Bud" Peterson

Statement from Geography

The Geography Department joins the greater University of Colorado and
Boulder communities in mourning the tragic death of David Parrish last
week in Mexico. As a promising student with a bright future, David was
very well regarded by the Geography faculty, staff and students. He
will be sorely missed. We wish to offer our deepest condolences to his
family and friends.

Tim Oakes
Associate Professor and Chair

Statement from UCSU Tri-executives

CU students returned from spring break to face the tragic death of one of our fellow students, David Parrish, a Geography major who would have finished his third year of studies this May. It's difficult to bear the loss of any member of our community and it's important that we come together in support for one another during this time of grief. Our thoughts and strength go out to David's family, his friends, and to all whose lives he touched. We're inspired by how David contributed to the CU community artistically and intellectually, and we're proud of him for his last heroic actions.

Hadley Brown
Charles Gilford
Sara Davine