Heidi Anderson was my best friend in college for a year or two. We met in the year-long Foundations of Natural Science class at The Evergreen State College and were lab partners in the chemistry component. Her father, it turns out, was a nobel nominated geneticist, so I think you can guess who carried the weight in the lab. She was one of the best-read people I have ever met, was an extremely competent backpacker, had a great sense of humor and will be missed.
After we graduated from college we drifted apart. When I heard that she was missing (link), I couldn’t stop thinking about her and briefly posted here about the situation and was on the verge of doing a mass emailing when, alas, the worst fears came to pass (link).
I have been struck by the tone of the news articles on her – perhaps it’s just that I’ve never had something like this happen so close to my own life, but I feel like posting a defense of her person here. It’s amazing how a general line like ‘she has a medical condition and needs medication’ can transform in the mind of the reader to something unstable or worse – Heidi had a chronic stomach ailment, no more.
Whatever the cause – accident or suicide, this is a sad end to a lovely person.
Rest in peace, Heidi.