It’s always a bit sad for me when I discover that an alum of my beloved alma mater has passed on. It is doubly sad when the death in question is connected with the horrible events in Benghazi on Tuesday.
The Ambassador to Libya was J. Christopher Stevens, Cal ’82. He majored in history, the same major I would graduate with eighteen years later. I know there are Berkeley alumni around the world, doing amazing and fantastic things, but we’re all connected in some crazy way. I was already sad over the events in Libya (and throughout the rest of the Middle East), but this just adds another small connection to the event and a reminder that we’re all connected to each other in ways we may fail to realize or understand.
The life of Ambassador Stevens represents everything we hope for in our students. He majored in history to learn about the world, and then he used that knowledge to make the world a better place. We are proud of his career. His death is a tragedy, and we mourn his passing.
History Department Chair Ethan Shagan (link)
(I have other degrees of separation to another man killed in the attack, and that one is also bothering me because I’ve thought seriously about joining the diplomatic service as an IT professional. I may or may not write about that later.)