I didn't know him but this is really tragic. It's pretty scary that he was even wearing a helmet too. Accidents can happen to anyone...
Mark von Bucher ‘11 died Tuesday night from head injuries he suffered while snowboarding in Utah during winter break. A brother in the Psi Upsilon fraternity, von Bucher was a pre-vet student in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.
“He was a really nice guy, and had everything going for him,” said James Bellars ’11, a member of Psi Upsilon. Bellars said he counted von Bucher as one of his best friends. “Everyone loved him. I’m going to miss him very much.”
Von Bucher had been with other brothers of Psi Upsilon at the time of the injury, when he hit his head going off a snowboard jump.
He was active on campus as a member of the club soccer team and was also an animal enthusiast, which influenced his pre-vet studies. He owned geckos and huskies, and Bellars said the two friends bought flying squirrels together. The squirrels still reside in Bellars’ room.
“He loved animals,” said Joe Nocciolino ’11, a brother in Psi Upsilon who played soccer with von Bucher. Nocciodino noted that von Bucher had “one of the most vibrant personalities I’ve ever seen.”
According to Bellars, von Bucher had received a new snowboarding helmet for Christmas. If he had not been wearing the helmet when the accident occurred on January 7, he may have died immediately, Bellis said.
An online CarePages blog had been set up by his family, updating well-wishers on Mark’s status, and a Facebook page was organized by friends. The CarePages received significant traffic, and the final post announcing his death had received 188 responses as of last night.
“He had a very stressful day yesterday with a very high, dangerous heart rate and very rapid breathing. It was as if his brain was firing on all cylinders at once and they couldn’t get it under control,” wrote “Team Mark” on the CarePages site yesterday morning. “Finally his heart stopped, and they couldn’t get it started again. His beautiful brain was just too damaged,”
“He was a great, great friend,” Nocciolino said.
“Mark was that person everyone loved. He was an amazing friend to all who knew him. Memories of him remain forever, among the best in my head,” wrote Lauren Eichelberger on the CarePages blog. “Today was a blow to us all, the pain of this loss will be everlasting.”
A native of Rochester, NY, von Bucher attended high school at Allendale Columbia School. A memorial service on campus is being organized for family and friends.