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McGill is mourning the loss of Christopher Driscoll, a 21-year-old student in the Faculty of Music, who died in a tragic skiing accident at Jay Peak, Vermont, on January 9. Christopher, who was from Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, was skiing with a friend from McGill when the accident occurred.
According to reports, Christopher lost control on an advanced trail and struck a tree. He was rushed to hospital in Newport, Vermont, where he was pronounced dead.
Many friends and colleagues from McGill are travelling to Charlottetown for the funeral, at the invitation of his family. McGill students are planning to perform a musical tribute to Chris there. McGill's Chaplaincy Service and the Faculty of Music will hold a memorial service on January 21. Meanwhile, condolences can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org at the Office of the Dean of Students, who will forward them to the family.
"Chris was an exceptional individual, strong-willed but gentle, fun-loving, full of energy and life, inclusive in his support for others. We are proud of all he accomplished in his too short life. And we will miss him deeply," said Don McLean, dean of the Faculty of Music.
Christopher was a talented and promising fourth-year music student of the Jazz Performance Program at McGill. He was also the drummer of Mobile Preid (pronounced "preed"), a jazz ensemble made up of tenor saxophonist Jon Lindhorst, bassist Patrick Reid and guitarist Jim Bland, also in their senior year in the Jazz Performance Program.
The International Association for Jazz Education (IAJE) selected Mobile Preid to represent McGill University at the 2004 North Sea Jazz Festival in The Hague, Netherlands. The IAJE selects only five university groups annually from around the world to attend this renowned international festival. Mobile Preid was the first Canadian group of its kind ever to be selected.
"Christopher had a huge future and so much talent in music, with maturity beyond his years. He exuded energy and love and was such a positive person," said fellow musician and best friend Patrick Reid.
McGill's Counselling Service is available to those who need support. A memorial service will be held at McGill on Friday, January 21, at 3 pm in Redpath Hall. The university flag will be flown at half-mast that day.