Former Durango resident Cooper Fredo Larsh died in a skiing accident Thursday, March 17, 2011, in Steamboat Springs. He was 19.
Mr. Larsh was born to Maureen Ryan and Kurt Larsh on Aug. 29, 1991, in Salt Lake City. He lived in Phoenix, Kansas City, Mo., Laramie, Wyo., Washington D.C., and Ottawa Hills, Ohio.
Mr. Larsh began his outdoor adventures as a baby, when he slept through the night for the first time at 5 weeks while camping in Dinosaur National Park. He learned how to ski as a toddler and soon added other outdoor pursuits to his repertoire.
When he was 10, he was hit by a car while crossing a street and was flown to The Children’s Hospital in Denver with a severe traumatic brain injury. After weeks in a coma, several months of hospitalization and many months of rehabilitation at the University of Michigan Pediatric Neurorehabilitation Clinic, Mr. Larsh was able to return to school and all of his outdoor activities.
He spent most of his high school years at the Colorado Timberline Academy in Durango. Upon graduation from CTA in May 2010, he was awarded the Paul Rumsey Award for Excellence in Math and Science.
At the time of his death, Mr. Larsh was a freshman at the College of Wooster in Wooster, Ohio, where he was awarded a four-year Dean’s Award Merit Scholarship.
“Cooper was a resilient and lovable boy who lived his life with tremendous grace and an extremely sophisticated wit,” his family said. “Cooper brought out the absolute best in all of those who healed him, taught him, lived with him and played with him.”
Mr. Larsh is survived by his mother and stepfather, Maureen Ryan and Mark Squillace, of Boulder; father and stepmother, Kurt and Rita Larsh, of Salt Lake City; stepbrothers, Tom Squillace and Sam Squillace, both of Boulder; baby sisters Talise Larsh and Anjolie Larsh, both of Salt Lake City; grandparents, Don and Ida Belle Larsh of Fort Collins, Joe and Irene Empey of St. George, Utah, John and Lisa Gubler of Bonsall, Calif., and Carolina and Steve Squillace of St. Clair Shores, Mich.; and numerous uncles, aunts and cousins.
An informal burial ceremony will take place at 2 p.m. Friday, March 25, 2011, at the Idaho Springs Cemetery, located just south of Interstate 70 at Exit 240 off Colorado Highway 103. Attendees should wear comfortable clothes and sturdy shoes or boots.
A memorial ceremony and wake will be held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, March 26, 2011, at the Community House at the Boulder Chautauqua Center, 900 Baseline Road. Dress is casual.
In lieu of flowers, memorial tax-deductible contributions may be sent to the Cooper Larsh Scholarship Fund, Colorado Timberline Academy, 35554 U.S. Highway 550, Durango, CO 81301.