In Memory of Amir Lopatin    
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 A Mother's Thoughts Email Article To a Friend View Printable Version 
 From:  Anonymous  
 Dated:  Tuesday, March 01 2005 @ 09:58 PM Eastern Standard Time
The tears flow non stop as I read the words of praise, words of pain and the words of profound loss echoing around this special young man. Although I knew Amir solely through the eyes of my son, it is through this lens that I was informed of his unique qualities. Amir who touched the lives of so many will live on in those who loved him.

So sad for this immense loss,

Mother of a friend to Amir

   

 David Fetterman Holocaust Video Dedicated to Amir Email Article To a Friend View Printable Version 
 From:  Admin  
 Dated:  Friday, February 25 2005 @ 09:12 AM Eastern Standard Time
-----Original Message-----
From: David Fetterman [profdavidf@yahoo.com]
Sent: Monday, February 21, 2005
Subject: video - dedicated to your brother

Hi Shoshana,

I have attached the video I produced about the holocaust and dedicated to your brother. I am also copying the administrator at the amirlopatin web page.
___________________

The video can be seen at: http://www.amirlopatin.com/images/HolocaustSUSEAmir.mov

   

 I Regret Not Knowing Him Well Email Article To a Friend View Printable Version 
 From:  Anonymous  
 Dated:  Wednesday, February 23 2005 @ 10:21 AM Eastern Standard Time
I had met Amir on one or two outings and after reading all of these accounts I am sorry I never got to know him. He was an amazing individual from everyone's descriptions and may we all be inspired by his memory.

-Aimee Ben-Ezra Cohen

   

 Thinking of You Email Article To a Friend View Printable Version 
 From:  aaltman  
 Dated:  Tuesday, February 22 2005 @ 03:04 PM Eastern Standard Time
Amir, I miss you and think of you often.

   

 Thanksgiving Email Article To a Friend View Printable Version 
 From:  JonWolfson  
 Dated:  Thursday, November 25 2004 @ 11:06 AM Eastern Standard Time
This Thanksgiving, I have a lot to be thankful for. What can Sara Lopatin be thankful for? Well, if I had children like Uri and Shoshana, I would be thankful for that. And I am thankful to have them as friends.

   

 Dear Amir Email Article To a Friend View Printable Version 
 From:  Anonymous  
 Dated:  Monday, October 18 2004 @ 10:05 PM Eastern Daylight Time
Dear Amir,
What can else can I say besides I had a huge crush on you in high school. You were the only guy I knew who could think with such keen understanding of the universe, listen with total respect and absorption, and speak with knowledge that preceded your time. And you did this all simultaneously with a smirk-ish smile, a squint and slight roll of your eyes that looked outward and up, as if you were amusing yourself with thought, basking in the enlightenment you gained by listening to your peers and reveling in the prospect of the future and the unknown. You made us think, “Well, what if?” And “What’s so wrong with that?” Those of us that had the great fortune to know you also had the great fortune of expanding our minds and challenging the limitations of thought, of interpersonal communication, and spreading our own ideas with a little more enthusiasm. With your eyes injustice was real, absolute was always a concept up for discussion, and above all, humanity was very much an every moment event not up for discussion.

Amir, where ever you are and whomever you are with they are lucky to have you. We all know from experience, a life altering experience none of us will ever forget.

Much love to you,
Dariele Watnick

   

 Ramaz Alumni Magazine - In Memoriam Email Article To a Friend View Printable Version 
 From:  Anonymous  
 Dated:  Wednesday, October 06 2004 @ 01:07 AM Eastern Daylight Time
The following piece appears in the fall 2004 issue of Ramaz High School's Alumni Newsletter, Ramblings.

IN MEMORIAM
AMIR LOPATIN '94 z"l

It has been five months now since our classmate Amir Lopatin died suddenly in a car accident just several weeks past his 28th birthday. To his family and close friends, the tragedy of his untimely death is still shocking and difficult to accept, and we continue to strive for ways to appropriately remember Amir and the impact he had on all who knew him.

At Ramaz, Amir stood out as a brilliant and creative student, with talents that ranged from math and science to poetry, art, music and theatre. He had a precocious intellectual appetite and was constantly recommending books to his friends (Salinger, Vonnegut, Hesse, Kesey, Nietzsche, Dostoevsky) and encouraging us in our own creative pursuits. It was Amir’s character, however, that had the strongest impact. At an age more typically characterized by insecurity and conforming behavior, Amir carried his own unconventional style with an unassuming manner and easy self-confidence. We always welcomed his humor and good natured antics, his zany observations, and his blunt honesty. He constantly challenged us to be more truthful with ourselves and with each other.

After graduation, Amir spent a year studying at Yeshivat Hamivtar in Israel. His rabbis and fellow yeshiva students recall his keen intellect and insightful questions, and the genuine sincerity with which he approached his own religious and spiritual quests.

From there, Amir went on to attend Brown University where he studied computer science. Even in high school, Amir was gifted programmer and he brought his trademark passion and creativity to his work with computers. After graduating from Brown, Amir accepted a position in a large software design company in Salt Lake City, Utah, where he worked to develop tank simulation programs. He later moved back to New York to join a small start-up software company where he worked on designing user interfaces and other programs.

Although his career took him in a different direction, Amir was always a gifted writer and poet. He had a magical way with words, an ability to blend the absurd with the profound in his own unique language and playful style. More than any photograph, it is Amir’s writings – ramblings in emails and letters, website postings, personal essays and poetry – that most vividly evoke his unique personality.

Amir had a wide assortment of interests and hobbies that constantly vied for his time and attention. He loved nature, and was an avid enthusiast of a range of outdoor activities, including hiking, biking, skiing, and sailing. He was a staunch environmentalist and went to great lengths to avoid causing any pollution. Perhaps his favorite outdoor activity was ultimate frisbee. Amir belonged to the ultimate league at Brown and when he came back to New York he volunteered to organize the then haphazard league here. Almost single handedly, he turned the New York league from a series of scattered pick-up games into an institution.

Amir always carried a strong sense of ethics and social responsibility. While at Brown he was a member of an organization that fed the hungry and he spent his spring breaks working with the homeless. When he moved back to New York, he volunteered weekly to teach sailing to inner city youth and was a "Big Brother" for three years to one young boy. He was a constant source of encouragement to his friends, and a devoted son and brother to his family. During the waning months of his father's life, he moved back home to Englewood to assist and comfort his family as best he could.

Although ensconced in a lucrative job and familiar social environment, in recent years Amir decided to take his career in a dramatically new direction: to use his creativity with computers to teach. This past fall, Amir began his first year of doctoral studies at the Learning Sciences and Technology Design program at Stanford University, a pioneering program dedicated to designing innovative learning technologies.

We can only speculate on the far-reaching extent of Amir’s contributions had he lived out the full potential of his life. To those close to him, it is perhaps most painful to accept that we will forever be without the unique pleasure of his conversation. To speak with Amir was to inhabit a special world removed from the petty and mundane aspects or ordinary life, where obscure references from philosophy, literature, poetry, and music were synthesized with Amir’s unique and refreshing take on nearly any topic. Through his insightfulness, his intellectual curiosity, and his humor he was able to transform situations and relationships to make them more meaningful, more interesting and more honest. In email correspondence with a close friend, Amir once wrote: “people leave your life and new people come in, but there are no substitutes.” For those who knew Amir, there is truly no substitute. We will miss him sorely.

Moshe Malina ‘94; Jonathan Wolfson ‘94


   

 From Jonathan Wolfson Email Article To a Friend View Printable Version 
 From:  JonWolfson  
 Dated:  Monday, October 04 2004 @ 04:10 PM Eastern Daylight Time
I was home for Sukkot, and I got a chance to look through my old notebooks from Yeshiva, the year I spent living with Amir. One of the things that stood out is the proximity of good, unique, inspired writing of mine and snippets written by Amir in my notebook. In other words, when Amir was close by participating in my writing effort, he inspired me with interesting, powerful, clear thoughts.

I feel I have lost a great muse.

Today is my first day back at work since the accident. As I returned to my desk for the first time in over six months, I saw a picture of Amir and me dressed for our senior prom. That experience put my work in perspective- I certainly will have him in my mind as I return back to the working world. I pray that he can help me be a success as a software engineer.

   

 Thinking of Amir on the High Holidays Email Article To a Friend View Printable Version 
 From:  Anonymous  
 Dated:  Tuesday, September 28 2004 @ 09:02 PM Eastern Daylight Time
The High Holidays were painful for me because they reminded me of Amir's death and brought a powerful wave of grief over this terrible tragedy. But one of the things that has given me strength in this difficult time has been the opportunity to perform mitzvot in Amir's memory. So through a happy accident I ended up helping some young families to build a sukkah for elderly Jews and had the chance to celebrate the life of all the Jewish generations together. And also I took on the obligation to learn a book of the Tanakh for an upcoming siyyum that I have not previously tackled in detail.

Unfortunately, we can't bring Amir back to life. But we can honor his wonderful legacy by performing as many mitzvot as possible and seeking to emulate his good and kind qualities and especially his compassion for poor black children.

   

 Memories of Salt Lake City Email Article To a Friend View Printable Version 
 From:  Josh Finken  
 Dated:  Friday, August 27 2004 @ 04:20 PM Eastern Daylight Time
My name is Josh Finken and I knew Amir from the year he spent working, yes on tank simulators, in Salt Lake City, Utah. During that time, I was a co-worker, roommate, and good friend. We kept in touch via email after he moved back to Manhattan. And last summer I was delighted to hear he would be moving to Palo Alto, as I too would be moving to the Bay Area at nearly the same time.

It is with deep regret, and shame on my part, that I am just now learning of his passing. It is clear Amir has many friends…back East, California, and across the world (his best friend Jonathan Wolfson to whom I apologize again for my insensitive correspondence). As his time in Salt Lake was brief I am sure none of his Utah friends and acquaintances are aware of his death, nor might any of you know who to contact and how. With that I am probably the first of his Salt Lake friends to post here, however definitely not the last.

It was Amir’s (indeed, brutal) honesty in conversation that first drew me to him as a friend – his honesty and utter self-confidence. His honesty led me to discover the trait of his quirky, odd, yet amazingly insightful, philosophical commentaries on life. That is what I loved most about him. To read his posted emails and writings to friends and family resonates very deeply within me. Thank you for that. And thank you to those who have put this memorial website together.

Since I too am floundering for words, I will try to be brief. As I think back I recall some of our many conversations Amir and I had had simply as roommates, over dinner, or driving up Big Cottonwood canyon to go skiing. Truthfully, he wasn’t the most graceful individual to ever click-in to a pair of straight skis, but he loved it nonetheless. (I remember how he always wore powder strips, even without having received fresh snow for months.) I have very fond memories of my time with Amir in Utah. But in all it’s grand, vast space I see now that Utah was too small for Amir. You can imagine how a cultural and theologically homogeneous place might prove difficult even for a man of Amir’s presence, beliefs and vision. However, it was the thrill of singletrack biking through aspens, turns in knee-deep powder, the simple yet ethereal beauty, which touched him. I am positive of that. I know he loved the breathtaking splendor of the mountains of the West.

It pains me greatly to lose you Amir.
I’ll miss you,
Josh