Luke Balstad Obituary, Death – Luke T. Balstad, a sophomore at Quincy House, unexpectedly passed away at his Michigan home on Tuesday, the College reported. In an email sent to Harvard undergraduates on Tuesday, Dean of the College Rakesh Khurana hailed Balstad as “brilliant and friendly” and “passionate about science and the outdoors.” He was adored by so many people, Khurana stated. The cause of death was not given by the school.

Faculty Deans Eric Beerbohm and Leslie J. Duhaylongsod, along with Resident Dean Nicole S. Simon, referred to Balstad as a “beloved” student who “brought a warmth and tremendous generosity to house life” in an email to Quincy residents.

The house deans wrote, “We are heartbroken.” Luke had a close-knit circle of friends at Harvard, and we were happy to have him as a part of the Quincy House neighborhood. For all of us, his demise is a loss. A community gathers together during trying times to mourn and to share strength.

It was Luke’s kindness, not his intelligence, according to his mother Kim, “that made him unique,” they said.

According to the announcement from the house deans, Balstad participated in the Harvard Outing Club, conducted research at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, and volunteered for the Harvard Square Homeless Shelter while a student at the College. Balstad took part in the First-Year Outdoor Program prior to his freshman year.

Balstad resided at Maple Yard for his first academic year. The house deans reported that he graduated from Hudsonville High School in Hudsonville, Michigan, where he directed the marching band and raced for the cross-country team. Khurana urged Harvard affiliates to contact friends and family in the wake of the news in his email.

You might find it difficult to process so much bad news, Khurana said, “given that this news comes at a time when we have just learned of horrific tragedies on campuses around the country.” I’m hoping you’ll keep in mind that there is no right or wrong way to grieve or feel after learning of someone’s loss.

Tuesday at 8 p.m., in Quincy House’s Junior Common Room, there will be a gathering of students to mourn Balstad, the deans said.