The greatest thing about being part of the University of Idaho community is how close knit it all is. Hardly ever do you meet somebody who doesn’t have a handful of mutual friends with you. And, from there, it’s so easy to bond, meet new people and grow your Vandal family.

That’s also where it gets tragic. Because when you lose a member of your family you also feel the pain all your friends feel.

These last few days have been difficult for me as U of I has lost an incredible and inspirational member of our family, who passed away early Thursday morning in a car accident.

I didn’t know her very well, but I know a lot of friends who were really close with her. And I knew how ambitious, friendly and caring she was. She wanted to make a difference and save the world. Her faith was important to her. I don’t think I have a single friend in the international community who didn’t know her. And that’s what hurts the most.

Next Thursday evening almost every Vandal I know or who I’m close with will be down in Boise for the big game, the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl. It will be a Homecoming.

I want to see all of you, hug you and let you know how appreciative I am of the time I spent with you all.

I also want you to get there safely and to take care of yourselves.

Take your time. Don’t speed. Stay off your phones. Check your vehicles to make sure you’re ready for the conditions.

We have many more memories to make together, Vandal family. Thank you to everybody at the University of Idaho who has ever touched my life, no matter how small an impact it was. I love all of you and I want you all to never hesitate to reach out to me if you ever need anything.

Rest in peace, Mamta Kandel.

 

 

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