in memoriam: Chris Horne

By Jim Stanford on November 24, 2007

two kind and caring souls
Chris and Mandy at their new home in N.C., August 2007. Suzanne Knighton photo.

It is with great sadness that I report Chris Horne, a friend and former Jackson resident, died Wednesday in a car crash in Mexico.

Horne was a teacher at the Journeys School, an avid kayaker and skier, a thoughtful and incredibly positive person. He was 34 years old.

His wife, Mandy, was seriously injured in the crash but is recovering at home with family in Chattanooga, Tenn. The Chattanoogan has a story about the accident.

The two left Jackson in August after marrying in June. They planned to start a family in western North Carolina, where Chris had landed a job as principal of a school.

At work or at play, tending to his plants or caring for his cat, Earl, or Mandy’s rottweiler, Sedona, Chris was known for his smile and gentle manner.

According to The Chattanoogan, the couple was on a trip to Baja and driving a stretch of rough road when the collision occurred, at about 11 a.m. Mandy, also a former Journeys School teacher, was flown to a hospital in El Paso, Texas, for treatment.

Friends said the two were on their way to a marine national park. Others from Jackson, including several Journeys teachers, were part of the trip.

Chris spent most of the last 10 years in Jackson Hole after taking the graduate program at the Teton Science Schools campus in Kelly.

The couple often skied together on Snow King, close to home, and when the snow melted in spring, he could be found paddling Granite Creek and the Hoback River. Camping, hiking, cycling and elk hunting were among his many outdoor pursuits.

Chris loved to travel. He taught by example, trading in his pickup truck for a Prius.

A memorial is planned at Journeys School. Details are forthcoming.

A friend who spoke with Mandy on Saturday said she asked that anyone wishing to help can make a donation to Habitat for Humanity or type I diabetes research.

Chris is sorely missed. Our thoughts are with Mandy and their families.

The following is from Summit Charter School in Cashiers, N.C., as reported by The Chattanoogan:

A biography of Chris Horne said he was born in Durham, N.C., but moved around a lot, growing up mostly in northern Virginia. He went to the college of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Va., majoring in biology as an undergraduate. In graduate school, he got his master’s degree in conservation biology.

Mr. Horne was a teacher in Alexandria, Va., from 1995-1997, before moving to Jackson Hole, Wyo., to enroll in a one-year master’s program teaching field-based education methods.

He met Mandy Hullander, only daughter of Bill and Linda Hullander, at Jackson Hole.

Mr. Horne stayed in Jackson Hole for seven years, briefly returning to graduate school from 1999-2001 at Antioch New England Graduate School in New Hampshire, where he earned his master’s degree in conservation biology, before returning to Jackson Hole.

Mr. Horne remained in that position from 2001-07, when he decided to come to Summit.

“I realized what a special place this is,” said Mr. Horne, who was torn to leave the equally beautiful Jackson Hole area. “It’s one of those places you don’t think you’ll ever leave, but this place is really eye-opening.”

Mr. Horne was guiding Summit into its new campus, which is scheduled to open next fall. Construction was slated to begin this fall on the 25-acre property.

At Summit, Mr. Horne was overseeing 25 staff members and about 175 students on campus.

Chris was heartbroken to leave Jackson, but he and Mandy made the decision to be closer to their families as they prepared to raise children. We looked forward to welcoming them back to our community for years to come.

Why do these senseless accidents always seem to claim the most wonderful people? (See Kevin McDougal, 2000, and King Weep, 2005, to name but a few.)

We’ll never understand why, but we do know that Chris would want us to stay positive.

To emulate him is to become a better person.

This is a note I received from Mandy Horne on Dec. 1:

June 9, 2007

This photo was taken by Chris’ dad at our wedding. I wanted to share this particular photo because I feel it captures us well … Chris, in the moment, fully present and attentive, and making me laugh.

I am not able to write much at this time but I wanted to thank Jim for this site and to thank you all for your prayers, and thoughts.

It’s the energy and love from everyone that is keeping me going from day to day. Peace be with you all.



Posted under Deaths

38 Comments so far

  1. Scott Maslansky November 25, 2007 7:41 am

    I just wanted to say thank you for sharing the news about Chris and Mandy and offering a glimpse of Chris’s positive energy and kindness. I know his friends from WY are extremely close to his heart and he also has circles of friends from graduate school (and I’m sure elsewhere) who will deeply miss him. I met Chris in graduate school where we developed a strong bond with our fellow classmate Matt. The three of us were beginning to plan our 8th annual backcountry ski trip. I feel blessed that we had so many adventures, including last year’s trip where we were fortunate to get to know Mandy prior to their wedding and previous trips where we met some of Chris’s wonderful friends from the Jackson and Laramie area.

    There are still many other friends who have probably not heard the tragic news yet, so I hope information like this on the web will be helpful for them to feel connected to Chris and Mandy’s wonderful circles of friends and family.

    Be well.

  2. js November 25, 2007 8:45 am

    Another Chattanooga paper, the Times Free Press, has a story today in which Mandy’s dad says the accident may have involved another car attempting to pass.

  3. Jenny Kohany Moore November 25, 2007 11:30 am

    I met Chris approximately 10 years ago in VA. He was a true friend right from the start. We bonded immediately and spent many hours talking about life, love, and relationships. He was seriously one of the kindest, most gentle, and grounded people I’ve ever met in my life. He loved his family and spoke of them often. He had a connection with everyone he met and never spoke negatively about anyone or anything. If there wasn’t something good to say, he wouldn’t say anything at all. He truly accepted all of his friends for exactly who they were and that has been so inspirational for me in my life. He was always good for a laugh and was so much fun to be around and was always up for anything. Throughout the years, we kept in touch via letters and phone calls and as life often does, we lost communication in the last few years. I attempted to call him several times in the spring, but didn’t leave a message figuring he was probably in the middle of the mountains camping or hiking or something and I’d try him again another time. Now I wish I had left a message just to speak to him one more time. I will treasure the times I had with Chris and I will never, ever forget him. I will try to follow his lead and live my life fully, with exuberance, passion and positivity. I am thinking of his wife, family, brother, and friends at this time. He will be missed.
    Jennifer Kohany Moore (San Diego, CA)

  4. Sammy Lupas November 25, 2007 1:00 pm

    mr horne rest safe in heaven i love you

  5. Christian Santelices November 25, 2007 5:23 pm

    I had the extreme pleasure of traveling with Chris and Mandy here in Chilean Patagonia two years ago. What wonderful people. Chris was on the board of directors of the Global Community Project and was very involved in helping us to put together cultural and service learning trips for students from the Tetons and Chile. His passion was teaching kids about the earth and its people, which he loved so much. Damn, I´m going to miss him. He was one of the kindest, most sincere people that I ever had the pleasure of knowing.

    Christian Santelices (Rio Verde, Chile)

  6. Christine Lucas November 25, 2007 6:36 pm

    I met Chris the first year we spent in Jackson at the PREE program. Since there were three Chris’s in our program, he called me “Lucas”. We were instant friends, which isn’t a challenge if you know Chris. He trusted me to cut his hair every month in the commons and we’d talk of the inane to meaningful events in our lives. We’ve been friends ever since that year, reconnecting every January (except this last when he was planning his wedding) when I brought my Wisconsin students to the Teton Science School. Chris always had time for everyone.
    On Monday Nov 19th, I gave birth to my first and most likely only child-Lucas Wilder Grondin. May he grow to have the integrity, the passion, the laugh, the respect for others and the natural world that Chris had.
    Mandy will be in all our thoughts, with the knowledge that the entire world and many students and teachers have lost a special love with Chris’s loss.
    Goodbye Chris. We loved and will continue to love you,


  7. David Benitez (student at summit charter) November 26, 2007 7:27 am

    Chris Horn was a great man. Even though he was our directer for four months he taught us a lot of things. His cup was always half full. He always had a smile on his face. He loved the outdoors. We know now that he is with the lord because he believed that Jesus was his savior. May Chris Horn lay in peace.

    we love you: David Benitez

  8. paige moss November 26, 2007 9:08 am

    mr.horne was a wonderful director. he touched all of us; students and teachers this tragic accident will change all of us. his memory will always be with us! i love you mr.horne rest in peace (in heaven)

  9. no name November 26, 2007 10:11 am

    we all miss Chris Horne and Mandy, when we heard about the news we were all in great shock. Chris was a great teacher and friend, he loved the outdoors. we all hope that he may rest in peace.
    we all will remember him as a great man and achiever.

  10. Joanna Snyder November 26, 2007 10:11 am

    Today the students in the Journeys Middle School have been sharing stories and mourning. As I write, students are creating a memorial wall in the student lounge, full of pictures, quotes, stories, artifacts, and writings. It is amazing to see how deeply he impacted so many lives. In these students, he has shaped a piece of our future. I will forever find inspiration from his integrity and generosity. Our thoughts are with Mandy and their families.

  11. Brittany Miller November 26, 2007 12:32 pm

    Chris was a funny, goofy guy around us kids. When I first met Chris, I just remember alot of curly hair. He had a great personality and always listened. Chris was my teacher and advisor in Journeys School when I was in middle school. He was a great leader and he was the best teacher and older friend I ever had. He taught me so many things. Chris’s passion was to open children’s eyes to the world and he always told me to ” look for opportunities”. Chris saw me grow from a awkward 12 year old to a some-what mature 17yr old . Chris taught me about the natural world with his kooky science classes. I will miss him greatly and I hope that he knows that so many loved him. My deepest sympathy to his family and to Mandy.

  12. Sally Yocum and Dave Miller November 26, 2007 12:54 pm

    Chris was one of the first people we met at Journeys School. When our daughter, Britt, decided to attend, it was a bit of a gamble to participate in this new and innovative school. When we met Chris, we knew we had made the right decision. Chris was such a true spriit, and his teaching showed it. The kids were naturally drawn to him, as were the parents, and they drank up all he said. Chris was a gift, and we feel very fortunate and privileged to have known him, and to have had him as our daughter’s teacher and advisor; to know that he helped to shape the person she is, and had an influence on the person she will become. Blessed healing to Mandy and Chris’ family. Chris has touched the lives of many, and he will be remembered always in our family and in our hearts.

  13. David Ginsburg November 26, 2007 7:11 pm

    Thank you to everyone who has shared their inspiring stories about Chris. I have known Chris since we were kids in elementary school and was lucky enough to reunite with him at W&M. None of you will be surprised to hear he was always a positive spirit.

  14. Betty Morris November 27, 2007 6:44 am

    A bright and shining light has been extinquished, but we will all do our best to carry his light foward. He has planted positive seeds from one side of the country to the other. Even though our time with Chris was much too short, we are very blessed to have known him and thank him for his gifts of hope.

    Our prayers are with Mandy and we will support her in any way we can.

  15. Erich Shuler November 27, 2007 9:49 am

    It is so wonderful to read the comments from Chris’s friends in Wyoming. We back here in Virginia selfishly feel like we sort of loaned him to you all for a decade or so. I was a summer camp counselor with Chris for several summers in Orkney Springs, VA. For a year, I lived across the street from his parents in Alexandria, VA. Chris was quite simply one of the most amazing people I have ever known. Every single second with him was a gift.

    The last time I was with Chris, he had just finished the July 4th 5K at Shrinemont. He crossed the line, got a drink, and walked over to where I and a couple friends were standing. He was wearing black shoes, black socks, black shorts, and a yellow shirt. I can hear his voice as clear as a bell. I remember thinking that his features were more prominent and angular than when we were 20-year-olds. My health at the time wasn’t very good, and I remember thinking, “I am going to get back in shape so that I can run this race with Chris.” The next time I run that race, I’m going to wear a shirt with his picture on it.

    God bless Mandy, Peter, and Chris’s parents, and God bless the soul of the extraordinary Chris Horne. I will miss him forever, and I will never forget him.

  16. Jennifer Johnston November 27, 2007 10:46 am

    Thank you all so much for sharing your stories and memories of Chris here. I am his cousin and know that I speak for the whole family when I say how much your thoughts and prayers mean to us all. I’ve always felt that Chris was more like a brother to me than a cousin, and now I really see that Chris was truly like a brother to everyone who knew or met him (I knew this all along, but it’s really even more clear now). It is that special quality he had which made such a strong and lasting impression on everyone he met — we should all try to emulate and cultivate that quality in ourselves. Chris was great at being fully present in the moment and giving each person his fullest attention.

    We are all fortunate to have had such a truly special and remarkable person in our lives, and still it is that same special and wonderful soul who is now just looking out for us from somewhere higher.

    Even while we know that his gentle temperament, spirit, love of life, and kind-hearted energy and positivity touched so many lives, it is so very heartening to read about it here.

    Chris Horne — beloved family member, friend, and one of my few personal heroes, too. He was (and is) so much to so many.

    I am glad to know of the Memorial Wall at Journey School and will make a special trip to visit the it one day to see a small sampling of the ways in which he was hero and brother to — and loved by — so many others whose lives were made better by knowing him. I know that his life was truly enriched by knowing you all, too. We deeply appreciate you all and the contributions you made to Christopher’s life, heart, and his life’s journey. We know that he carried that love from you all with him every moment.

    Thank you all again for your love, warmth, kind thoughts, happy memories, and prayers — all of them will certainly help to bring us through this difficult and painful time, while we try make our best efforts to focus on all the positive things and our gratitude for having had Chris with us and among us for as long as we did. Thankfully with Chris, there are so many of those positive things on which to dwell. His life, heart, warmth, love, grace, strength, positive attitude, understanding, concern, compassion, kind-hearted humor, and gentle spirit was a shining example for so many. Chris will indeed be sorely missed, but he will always be with us in our hearts, in our memories — and beyond.

    Great love and thanks to you all ~ and Peace Profound.

  17. Deron Bauman November 27, 2007 6:27 pm

    It is with great sadness that I learn of Chris’s passing. We worked together leading wilderness trips in Virginia and spent a wonderful week in the Wind Rivers a few years after.

    As so many here have said, he was a man filled with patience, humor, grace, and love. We shared a short time together, but I considered him a friend, a companion I could trust.

    With all the love in my heart, I am thankful for having known him.

  18. Kristen Grubbs November 28, 2007 7:22 am

    11/28 As Scott says above, I just found this website through google after learning of Chris’s death last night from a friend, and I am so glad to be able to share in this community of people who knew and loved Chris.

    I also knew him from Antioch graduate school, and though we had been out of touch for the past bunch of years, I had the joy of visiting him when he started work at the Journeys School, and seeing him in his life out there. My first memories of Chris, though, are of him walking – striding with those long legs – down the halls off Antioch – with those amazing red curls and shining smile. I also spent time with him and other friends in the cozy cabin he lived in off the most beautiful dirt road I know of in Nelson, NH – walking through the snowy hills and sitting around a warm kitchen – those graduate days will always have a strong place in my heart – one that stands out, even as we all get married and have kids and develop professional pursuits and “grow up” into our busier lives … You can’t really get a more perfect moment than sitting around a wood stove with friends and music and laughter while the snow flies outside. Chris and his guitar were a big part of that moment.

    When Chris was leaving Nelson, in a new (old) pick-up truck, he asked if anyone could drive his old red jeep from NH back down to DC/VA. I offered (so I could visit my sister and friends in DC), and had fun doing so. Meanwhile, Chris used my tiny civic hatchback in NH – when I returned, he had made me a mixed tape of great songs and left it in my car. Believe it or not, i still have the same car and still have only a tape player in it, and still listen to tapes when I drive to work each day. Chris’s tape has remained one of the most-oft played of any – great tunes, and highlighted by the bird song of a mutually favorite bird, the hermit thrush.

    Chris also loved great blue herons, which I think was his “totem” bird at Antioch. Another memory of Chris I will always cherish is of a very early morning, walking down the woods roads and forests near his house in Nelson, to the hidden heron rookery – my first visit there – sitting by the edge of the pond and watching the majestic birds fly in and out of their nests – also wood ducks – thrushes – mosquitoes – such a quiet stillness yet amazing energy in that early morning natural community. Chris shared that particular world with me – just as I know he shared such worlds with every student he met and every friend he had. Even though we had been out of touch these last few years, i still have holiday cards he made by hand and sent to me, from the west to back east. He was an amazing person who brought such warmth and light and kindness to this world. I will miss knowing he is in this world, but actually I know his energy will still be in this world, carried on by all the people who knew him. I send my deepest condolences to Mandy, whom I did not know, but I know must be an equally amazing woman, and to all his family. I am so fortunate to have known Chris, and will be playing his mixed tape loudly in my car for many many miles and years to come, singing and smiling, and thinking of and missing him.

  19. Audrey Kelly November 28, 2007 7:45 am

    Terrible loss for those who were fortunate enough to know him and a terrible loss for those he had yet to meet. A sweet generous funny dude and I will miss him. My deepest sympathies to Mandy and to the families.

  20. Deb Allen Keenan November 28, 2007 10:11 am

    Chris is a remarkable man – he made such an impact on everyone whose path crossed his. I always admired his faith in The Lord. He debunked the myth that you cannot have faith in God without sacrificing your intelligence and brain

    I am a better person for knowing Chris. I am so sad, as is everyone, that this vibrant, dynamic, authentic, kind, intelligent, hilarious, warm, compassionate man is no longer with us. My prayer for Mandy, her family, Chris’s family, and all their friends (they have so many) is that we remember, that we have a Good and Sovereign God, even when we don’t understand His timing or reasoning.

    My heart goes out to Mandy whom I love dearly. I pray for love, peace, and God’s deep blessing of healing for everyone who loves Chris. I pray for an extra dose of all of this for his treasured bride, Mandy.

    Deb Allen Keenan

  21. Aaron Wehner November 28, 2007 2:12 pm

    Chris will probably always hold the title of kindest person I have ever met. He was in my first class of my first day of college–a huge, great head of hair in full effect–and we shouldered many a backpack together in the four years that followed. We were roommates our senior year in college, and I have always felt lucky to have had that time–now even more so. We have been in sporadic touch since then, so it is wondeful to read all the posts from the people that have been close to him over the years. He has clearly been a very dear person to many, and his generous spirit will continue to live among us. My warmest wishes go out to Chris’s and Mandy’s families.

  22. Luke Terkovich November 29, 2007 9:27 pm

    Thanks for putting this up on the internet guys. Chris was my teacher last year and he was one of the best teachers I ever had. He never really taught me academically because I was not in any of the classes he taught but he taught me life lessons. Last year was my first year living in Jackson and i had moved from Jersey and this kind of living and place was new to me and Chris helped me to fit in. He was a great loving and caring guy. He could also be very funny. My best wishes go out Chris’s and Mandy’s families. Thank You Chris

  23. Danny Levinson November 30, 2007 2:40 am

    I’m glad I found this thread about Chris. I am very sad to hear this news, as it has traveled through many email inboxes and across the eyes of many other stunned people who knew him.

    I first met Chris the summer before freshman year of college in 1992. As our dormitory resident assistant, he sent a letter to all the guys on our hall with information about what to expect from college, what to purchase, and how to plan. He ended my letter, as I’m sure he did everybody else’s, with a quickly sketched cartoon of himself with frizzy long hair and postscript that the “e” in Horne was silent. He was my introduction to college. He met my folks and me that first day in khakis, tie and a button-down shirt–attire that looked ill-fitting on his laid-back soul.

    Chris is patient, curious, and loyal–those three virtues keep going through my head about him. He was helpful in a couple important situations and I will always be indebted to him. I sometimes since have thought that one day I would be able to repay his generosity. Karma never ends and so I still hope to get back to him one day.

    He graduated two years ahead of me and after college I only remember seeing him once, but he was always laid-back and a mountain of patience. I live in Asia now and the few times I find myself faced with a squat toilet I always think of Chris and a time in 1993 when he and his college girlfriend were experimenting with squatting when using the toilet because it helps the body stay natural and clean. I thought it odd at the time, but since coming across the Pacific have learned he was absolutely right.

    He was a good teacher in many ways.

  24. Scott Kane November 30, 2007 8:35 pm

    I am devastated to hear of Chris’s loss. What a tragedy for the world and all those students who have lost the chance to be influenced by this exceptional person.

    In the summer of 2000, Chris took a NOLS instructors course. I had the honor to teach the course but soon realized this guy had more to teach me than I, him. He was a superb outdoors person, well versed in all of the natural sciences, technically proficient in the mountains, strong and fit and passionate about wild places and their exploration. He was a gifted teacher and deeply caring of all those around him. Everyone loved to be around Chris and the entire course was buoyed by his bright spirit and and energy.

    When asked a few years ago, “Who was the very best NOLS student you ever had?” “Chris Horne” was my answer. NOLS was unlucky when it lost him to the Journey School. His students there were the big winners.

    Mandy, Chris’s family and friends, I am so sorry for your loss. Please let us know if there is anything we can do.

  25. Bud Sechler December 3, 2007 6:53 am

    Its a shame that a tragic event like of Chris’s death brings certain communities closer together. At Antioch, I am proud to have been part of a close-knit community where each person was special and respected as an individual. Chris Horne was part of this community, and will always be so. For myself, I did not keep in touch with Chris after graduate school. However, his passing reminds me how great a community Antioch was for me and for many of my friends. Chris attended many social events and was looked at as a kind, generous, and thougtful guy. He practically made friends with everyone he met. I always thought this time of my life was incredible, meeting amazing people, sharing with friends, and gaining knowledge for the future. Everyone at Antioch at this time shared a journey, just a small portion of time. Chris had a journey, and he shared his with everyone he knew. It reminds me, that even in a small moment of time, memories will last, and time will not forget people like Chris. I am a better person to have been at Antioch during this moment of time, and a better person to have known Chris Horne.

    I hope that all of us alumni can honor our friend at the next reunion…

  26. js December 3, 2007 10:46 am

    This is a note I received from Mandy on Saturday. She wanted to post a photo, but because these comments only can receive text, I have added the link below. Also, the photo and note appear in the main post above.

    Click here to see the photo on Snapfish:

    From Mandy:

    This photo was taken by Chris’ dad at our wedding. I wanted to share this particular photo because I feel it captures us well … Chris, in the moment, fully present and attentive, and making me laugh.

    I am not able to write much at this time but I wanted to thank Jim for this site and to thank you all for your prayers, and thoughts.

    It’s the energy and love from everyone that is keeping me going from day to day. Peace be with you all.


  27. Julie Stanley December 3, 2007 4:38 pm

    As most of you here, I have been trying to come up with a way to express my feelings about Chris Hornes death.

    I am a parent at Summit Charter School in Cashiers, NC and although Chris had only been our Director for such a short time we were all able to learn so much under his direction. (In many different areas) and feel a connection to him.

    His passion for educating and influencing young children was very imminent in the way he memorized their names, played educational games, visited their classrooms, went on field trips and just listened.

    I was able to share a story with Chris right before he left for Thanksgiving break. My son is 9 years old and came to me and said “Mom, I think Mr. Horne is doing a great job as a Director.” I said “Oh, why do you say that?” He said “He plays games with us and visits our classrooms a lot.” I will never forget the smile on Chris’ face when I told him this. He said we are making progress and it will only get better………….

    Thank you to Mandy for supporting Chris in his decision to come to Cashiers and make a difference in our little community. Hope you will come back and be a part of this small and loving town.

    To Chris Hornes parents. Thank you for raising such a wonderfully well rounded son. I can only hope that my 9 year old son becomes half the man chris was.

    Chris will never be forgotten.

    Peace be with you,

  28. Jeremy Jobling December 5, 2007 5:09 am

    I remember all that hair! What a GREAT GREAT guy Chris was! I met him at Shrine Mont (Summer 1991) while I was out from S.Africa. When I felt insecure or lonely or missed my family and mates – he was always kind and comforting and really caring.

    Some of my craziest and happiest memories are from that Summer and being part of the team (especially St G’s camp)!
    Though I haven’t seen him for 16 years – I’m going to miss that man!

  29. Missy and Dave Smith December 19, 2007 5:05 pm

    We are so saddened by the news of Chris’ death. We both remember him so fondly as a glimmer of light in the sometimes dark world of college. Aaron said something above about a huge head of hair, and that’s what I thought of when I heard about the accident- that beautiful boy with the gorgeous hair and equally brillant smile. Chris was always kind, always chill, and always seemed to know what he was all about- a quality I respected very much. It is a real lesson to read the posts of people who knew him later in life; he became the person we’d all like to be, the person who is loved by many, repected by all, and remembered so well by everyone who knew him.

  30. Terri Borio December 27, 2007 8:27 pm

    I have just learned of this horrific tragedy and I wanted to send my thoughts and prayers to Mandy and her family and to Chris’s family. Mandy and I were good friends in graduate school and had lost touch for several years. I had the pleasure of meeting Chris this past summer when I bumped into Mandy and Chris (in Italy) on their honeymoon. I spent one afternoon with Mandy and Chris and had the chance to get to know Chris a little as the three of us explored a beautiful island on Lake Maggiore.

    Mandy- I lost the piece of paper with your email and contact information this summer and I was looking for your contact information online (today) when I came across the articles about the accident. My contact information is: -Please know that you are in my thoughts.

  31. Sammy Lupas December 28, 2007 9:18 am

    I feel so blessed 2 have gotten to know such a wonderful man, I loved him, He was so amazing. The thing that was the most amazing is how he touched so many people in such a short time and I feel sooo very blessed for that.

  32. Aly Harmon October 4, 2008 10:37 pm

    Chris Horne was my teacher and advisor at the journeys school. I remember he was always so caring and happy. My deepest sympathies go out to Mandy and Chris’ family. Chris helped me through some really tough times and no matter what our conversation was about, I always ended up smiling. He was an amazing person and I will never forget that. To this day, my journeys friends and I still laugh about the good times we had with him. We miss you Chris, and we love you.


  33. Larkin Sinnott December 10, 2008 9:45 am

    Chris is a shining light for me and for the world. His departure from the Earth was horribly tough for many. I was always a good friend of his, although we kinda lost tough a bit over the last few years of his Jackson time. I like many was looking forward to his return to the East Coast.

    He like many helped my recovery from a bad head injury I had back in 1999, just the words/emails/ laughs with friends such as him were medicine for the soul!

    Chris please keep watch over us all! And to all Happy Holidays and a great 2009!

  34. Marc Blackwood February 9, 2009 12:50 pm

    I went to school with Chris at William and Mary and he was such an unforgettable person, a very kind soul. He will always be in my thoughts.

  35. Gavin Montgomery Maxwell February 16, 2009 9:12 pm

    I came late to learn of this tragic news, but wanted to say a few words about Chris, and what a special man he was.

    Chris was my NOLS instructor in the Wind River Wilderness in 2002. Over the month or so we shared in the Wyoming backcountry, I got to know a truly kind and thoughtful soul. I was about 19 at the time, so I looked up to Chris as a role model then and I still do to this day. My favorite memories were after a long day’s hike when we’d kick back over dinner and just sit under the stars telling stories of the day’s journey and sharing life lessons. He was the consummate teacher: knowledgeable, patient, understanding, and always willing to lead by example. His outlook on life was unassailably positive (despite getting into some tight spots on the trail!) and the things I learned from him have helped guide my decision-making through a variety of challenging scenarios that require careful judgment and leadership. Like Chris used to say about NOLS, it’s a hard thing to capture in words for someone who didn’t have the experience, and I feel that way about trying to describe the experience of knowing Chris.

    Anyway, here is a picture of us after a grueling hike over Temple Pass in the background. Thanks Chris, for being a shoulder to lean on… You are dearly missed.

  36. John Lamb March 30, 2010 6:27 pm

    Just a note to let anyone who knew Chris Horne know that a Habitat for Humanity Home built in his memory in Chattanooga, TN was dedicated this morning! Photos of the day and a story about the family who will live there are online at This home was built thanks to the generosity of Chris’ family and friends across the U.S. Their generosity has changed the life of a family in need of a home!

  37. Marc Blackwood October 20, 2010 2:11 pm

    Thanks, that picture of Chris and Mandy at their wedding is exactly how I remember Chris.

  38. Brad Montague September 27, 2011 10:04 pm

    Chris and I lived together in 1992-1993 at William & Mary. Before the year started, I found myself without a place to live. Chris, who would have had a much-coveted “single” offered to let me live with him, though he really didn’t know me very well, other than I had the reputation of being something of a troublemaker–not exactly the first guy you’d want to open your door to. Chris opened his door. I struggled mightily that year. I was wrestling with all kinds of demons, and I lived up to my reputation. Chris never lost patience with me or judged me. Never hassled me. He showed concern when I was really screwing up, but he realized that I had to go through with my journey, and that it didn’t have anything to do with the classes I was skipping or the opportunities I allowed to pass me by. Chris understood I was a different kind of guy, and I really appreciated that. A couple of years ago, somebody posted a picture from spring ’93 on facebook of me at our fraternity formal. For some reason, I was wearing one of his ties. Our dates were friends, and we had a really good time that night on the bus down to Va Beach. That night was kind of the crowning achievement of my disastrous W&M career and Chris helped me celebrate it. It comes as no surprise that in his career he pursued a completely different approach to education from traditional methods. I kind of think he knew that I was educating myself differently at that time and didn’t look down on me. He was a really young guy, but he already had so much wisdom. We lost touch after I moved away, and I didn’t see him again until the funeral. When I heard that he died, it really broke my heart. He was such a good person. That funeral was tough. I hadn’t seen a lot of our mutual friends in a long time, and to come together like that in grief after having spent so much time together in joy was confusing. A lot of us were confronting death for the first time among our peers. It made us all feel a little bit older and more vulnerable, I think. I remember at one point in time after the funeral, I was looking around at my circle of friends–noticing trifling minutiae like extra pounds, wrinkles, lost hair, thinking that we were starting to lose our youthful attractiveness. Chris’s mother walked up around that time and thanked us for coming, and told us that we all looked beautiful. I looked around again and realized how right she was, as the reflected beauty of Chris’s spirit bounced off of us and all around the room, obscuring those flaws and defects and magnifying the images of our friendship, coming in shared smiles and stories. Chris and I shared a love of music and he introduced me to stuff that I treasure to this day and try to share with others. A lot of that great traditional music he loved was played at the funeral service, and it really moved me that day. I remember a few months after the funeral, I went to see Willie Nelson and he was playing many of the same traditional songs that were included in the service. One of our mutual friends who had attended the funeral was there with me and I told her that I could feel Chris’s presence in the theater that night as the music that he enjoyed so much was played for us. It was really special. I thank God that I had the opportunity to know Chris Horne and I pray for the repose of his soul, and for comfort for those he left behind.

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