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Remembering Sam Raushenbush

Friends and family are invited to share memories of the young man who died in a train accident Friday morning.

Bright, funny, and gregarious, Sam Raushenbush, 20, lived life against the grain, according to his older brother, Nick.

"Sam knew how to be happy, which was to just go and do whatever he wanted to do."

Sam Raushenbush died Friday morning, when he was struck by an while he was apparently spraying graffiti in the area with a friend. It was his 20th birthday, which he had planned to celebrate later with friends at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Sam grew up in San Diego and later Piedmont, where his father, Richard Raushenbush is currently a member of the school board.

From Berkeley to Cochella, across the country, and even traveling abroad in Italy, Sam touched lives everywhere he went with his energy and humor. Nick said Sam's Facebook page was "streaming" yesterday with non-stop posts from hundreds of friends mourning their loss.

Sam's mother died when he was 11, and he had struggled with addiction as a teen, but, said Nick, "he came out on top."

He had delivered a hilarious speech as the class speaker for the class of 2009 at the Oakley School, a therapeutic boarding school in Utah, and had been accepted to UC Santa Cruz, his dream college.

Sam recently wrote a candid column for the Huffington Post about his decision to move to Berkeley after his freshman year to take time off from college and experience the "real world" after getting caught up in the party scene.

He wanted to spend this year close to his family, but had planned to return to Santa Cruz next fall. He was looking forward to a career in writing, interviewing hip hop for a music blog.

A big Golden Gate Warriors fan, Sam played basketball weekly in San Ramon. He'd played ultimate frisbee and made it to the state championships with his high school cross country team.

Sam's short life, Nick said, "It's an epic tale. ... He packed more into his life than most people can in a hundred. This kid was a rock star and that's how he should be remembered."

Along with his many friends, Sam leaves behind his father Richard, step-mother Barbara Giuffre, brother Nick, and ten-year-old half-sister Genevieve.

A memorial service and celebration has been scheduled for Wednesday, Nov. 10. All the details have been posted here: http://patch.com/E-ZS7

Chelsea Spitze November 06, 2010 at 04:27 PM
Sam was a young man full of positive energy and a love for life. His smile was brilliant and contagious. He will always be loved and remembered, we miss him very much!
Jennie Lippincott November 06, 2010 at 10:40 PM
I remember him as a beautiful, playful, loving child with a big smile. Very friendly always chatting with me at Beach School

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