News

Kayle Hallee.

Kayle Hallee.

A little over a week ago, Kayla Hallee passed away. She was a vivacious and adventurous 20-year old about to enter her junior year at UCSC to continue her course in environmental studies. On August 27, her body was found off the coast of Santa Barbara, a mile away from an orange kayak.

Although the cause of her death still remains unknown, coroners are not calling the death suspicious and no evidence of trauma was found.

What’s particularly strange about this tragic loss is that local news media have utterly failed in reporting it. In fact, most of her friends at UCSC probably heard of her death through Facebook. Though the story broke fairly big right away, being reported on the CBS local news in L.A., Hallee’s connection to UCSC went unreported for days. Even the small item in the Santa Cruz Sentinel, picked up from the Associated Press, didn’t mention it.

It was a lesson in how media outlets cannibalize each other, as the initial reports from SoCal news sources identified her only as a graduate of Mission Viejo High School, and subsequent write-ups (including the one in the Sentinel) simply copied that. In fact, it wasn’t until a day after Santa Cruz Weekly called inquiring about Hallee that UCSC issued a statement about her death.

To those who knew her on campus, Hallee’s smiling face will never be forgotten. As a member of the campus’s Kayak Club and Women’s Club Soccer, she wasn’t just a student who “attended” UCSC, but one of those rare people who was a living, breathing embodiment of its very message— “let there be light.”

She is remembered as warm and outgoing, and a true lover of the outdoors—striving to be in nature at least once a day.

Perhaps her July 2012 Facebook status post, quoting a line from “The Prophet,” says it best: “Only another breath will I breathe in this still air, only another loving look cast backward…Only another winding will this stream make, only another murmur in this glade, And then shall I come to you, a boundless drop to a boundless ocean.”

An on-campus memorial for Kayla Hallee is being organized by UCSC students for Saturday, Sept. 14; contact Jacquie Perez at[email protected] for more information.

  • http://www.santacruz.com/news/2013/09/10/kayla_hallee_r.i.p Bohdan Kwasowsky

    I never knew her until now.  And am so grateful to have encountered such an amazing spirit.  Reading her twitter made me laugh out loud.  What an outstanding example of genuine humanity. Kayla’s passion for the environment is wonderful. Being a farmer from New York state, I work the fields in solemn respect for Miss Hallee today.

  • http://www.santacruz.com/news/kayla_hallee_r.i.p.html Bohdan Kwasowsky

    I never knew her until now.  And am so grateful to have encountered such an amazing spirit.  Reading her twitter made me laugh out loud.  What an outstanding example of genuine humanity. Kayla’s passion for the environment is wonderful. Being a farmer from New York state, I work the fields in solemn respect for Miss Hallee today.

  • http://www.santacruz.com/news/2013/09/10/kayla_hallee_r.i.p Jacquie Perez

    Anyone that would like to come to the event, please add yourself to the guest list at https://www.facebook.com/events/1414197252133586/

  • http://www.santacruz.com/news/kayla_hallee_r.i.p.html Jacquie Perez

    Anyone that would like to come to the event, please add yourself to the guest list at https://www.facebook.com/events/1414197252133586/

  • http://www.santacruz.com/news/2013/09/10/kayla_hallee_r.i.p Livia Hyams

    Kayla was going to be a senior, not a junior.

  • http://www.santacruz.com/news/kayla_hallee_r.i.p.html Livia Hyams

    Kayla was going to be a senior, not a junior.

  • http://www.santacruz.com/news/kayla_hallee_r.i.p.html Ron McCaw

    I, knew her family. I remember, when they announced a baby was due, 20 years ago. Very good people. Such a tragedy shouldn’t happen to anybody. :(

  • http://www.santacruz.com/news/2013/09/10/kayla_hallee_r.i.p Ron McCaw

    I, knew her family. I remember, when they announced a baby was due, 20 years ago. Very good people. Such a tragedy shouldn’t happen to anybody. :(