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Henry Kopple Obituary: In loving memory of Elizabeth Kopple’s son, 18-year-old Henry Kopple

Henry Kopple Accident Lewis & Clark College: In loving memory of Elizabeth Kopple’s son, 18-year-old Henry Kopple.

After dropping off her son to college in 2022, the mother was devastated to find that he tragically perished in an accident not long after.

In a moving piece for HuffPost, Elizabeth Kopple recalled the final moments of her 18-year-old son Henry’s life as he left for his first year of college, an event that ought to have been happy for him and his family.

“He’d overcome so many challenges to get there: attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, anxiety and difficulty connecting with other kids,” Kopple wrote. “As he matured, he gained confidence by participating in cross-country running, drama and debate.”

Elizabeth met Henry on campus a week later for orientation after Henry arrived on the nameless college campus earlier than others to go on a walk with a few new classmates.

Henry introduced his mother to some new acquaintances, and the group even shared a meal in the cafeteria.

After a few days, Elizabeth had to take a flight back home because the rite of passage of sending one’s oldest child off to college was over.

“I placed my hands around Henry’s middle, pressed my right cheek to his chest, closed my eyes and squeezed,” Elizabeth wrote. “At that moment, I was embracing every version of my son: chunky baby, curious toddler, zany seventh grader in braces, hungry teenager, all the rest I knew and had known…After one final hug — Henry’s signature move — I left for the airport.”

Henry was killed beneath a collapsed unsafe structure a few days later, on his first day of lessons. There were two more injured students.