Although Leo Lydon had only attended UCSB for about three months, the approximately 250 students who showed up for his memorial Thursday night proved the positive affect one person can have on others in a short time.
Friends and residents described Lydon, who passed away Monday morning in his San Nicolas room, as an incredibly funny person who loved life and brought joy to everyone who knew him.
“He was the heart and soul of our hall,” one resident said. “He was the funniest guy I ever met.”
Friends and attendees listened to Lydon’s favorite song, “Who Would Have Thought” by Rancid, and looked at pictures of Lydon with his many friends.
“In the short time we were here, there were so many stories and so many good times,” another resident said. “He had an affect on everyone who knew him.”
One student who went to high school with him said Lydon was not only funny but also a genuine person. She told the attendees that Lydon cleaned up her apartment after a party while everyone else was asleep.
“I didn’t think anyone was that cool and I should have known better, because Leo was,” she said. “He had a huge heart underneath all those laughs and that fro.”
Undeclared freshman Anton Parker, Lydon’s San Nicolas neighbor, said his friendship with Lydon was one he would remember forever and wished the time he spent with him could have been longer than just Fall Quarter.
“It was only three months, but it was three months that I was lucky to know him,” he said. “It was quite a shock to find out that friendship is temporary in that way. Everyone took for granted that he’d be here tomorrow.
“He was one of those people you meet for just a brief time in your life and you’re captivated,” Parker said. “He had the respect of everyone; we all enjoyed his presence as soon as he stepped in the room.”
Chancellor Henry Yang, who flew back from Washington, D.C after he heard about Lydon’s death, said it was an honor to have Lydon at UCSB. When he visited Lydon’s room Monday night, he said it was filled with friends.
“I was surprised everyone was laughing and telling jokes,” he said. “They were trying to capture the spirit of Leo.
“Leo, you have made a difference at UCSB and we were proud to have you,” Yang said.
Many of the students who spoke said Lydon was very happy attending UCSB and enjoyed living with the people in his hall. Another friend who attended high school with him said those who knew Lydon should remember how much joy he brought.
“He accepted people and he had love and he had joy. He had a heart of joy,” he said. “We need to mourn and we need to grieve, but after this comes joy.”
“He was also one of the most serious guys and probably one of the best friends you could have,” a long-time friend of Lydon’s said. “If you didn’t know him you missed out.”