Andrew “Andy” Mora, who completed his credential in December, passed away February 4. He was 37.
Born December 15, 1982, in Reno, he was a lifelong athlete and member of the 1999–2000 Zone Championship basketball team for South Tahoe High School. He attended San Francisco State and then transferred to Chico State in 2006, going on to earn his bachelor’s degree in kinesiology in 2007 with an option in physical education teacher education. In 2009, he earned his master’s degree in kinesiology and went on to teach physical education and coach middle school basketball and volleyball throughout Northern California.
In summer 2018, he returned to Chico State to study in the adapted physical education program, which would allow him to specialize his physical education classes for students with special needs. He worked diligently for two summers toward his credential and completed his final course in fall 2019.
“Andy was so kind and considerate,” said kinesiology professor Craig Buschner. “He cared about his education at Chico State and in [physical education teacher education and adapted physical education]. He was a young man who maximized his skills and potential for children and youth.”
Many faculty members recalled Mora’s bright smile and his deep passion for sports and working with children.
“It’s hard to imagine a world without Andy,” said faculty member Josh Trout, former chair of the kinesiology department. “I remember admiring how his confidence steadily grew when he was teaching volleyball classes as a grad student. I just saw him a few months ago downtown at Pita Pit, and we had a chance to chat and catch up. He was a smart young man and a true gentleman.”
Mora is survived by his father, Andy Sr., brother Matt, sister Nicole, grandmother Jadwiga, and many other beloved family members. A memorial and celebration of life was held February 15.
To honor his life, Mora’s family is requesting donations in his name be made to the University’s Andrew Mora Memorial Scholarship to benefit future teachers in the physical education teacher education program.
The University flag will be lowered Monday, March 2, in his memory.