Chris Higgins, A Student Whose 'Generosity Was Legendary,' Dies at 23
Published: Wednesday, June 4, 2008
Updated: Sunday, June 17, 2012 04:06
Of course, it was Chris's lighter side that often stood out.
"You would be hard-pressed to find anyone he knew that didn't fall victim to one of his pranks," Calle said.
Finnegan added: "Chris had the ability to make you laugh at anytime," calling Chris's practical jokes "famous."
Indeed, Chris Higgins was totally unique, according to those who knew him best.
Rogers described Chris as someone who "cared about his looks and his style, [but] could care less if people judged him."
Chris was almost always the most well-dressed of his friends, they say.
"He was always looking sharp," Calle said. "He was always well groomed. He was always very presentable. One night he could be wearing a pretty typical Georgetown outfit - jeans and a button down shirt tucked in - and another night he might go for a hip hop style with a hat and a chain."
Danielle Epstein (MSB '09) added: "Rarely did Chris wear the same outfit twice, or go out at night without diamonds somewhere, whether they be in his ears, on his wrist, or around his neck."
The diamond earrings and diamond cross he liked to wear made him stand out, Price said. A person who hadn't met Chris may not have known what to think. But that didn't bother Chris Higgins.
Tagged to the back of Chris's truck was a sticker that boldly declared: "Don't hate." It was a motto - one meant to celebrate his individuality - by which Higgins lived his life, Rogers said.
"He did it his own way," Price said.
`The Chris Higgins fashion'
Last spring, on the final day as a volunteer at a D.C. soup kitchen, Chris Higgins brought Georgetown apparel for all of his fellow volunteers. That gesture, remembered by Calle, was a microcosm of Chris's personality.
"His generosity was legendary" Epstein said.
Calle said that Chris frequently offered to take his friends on trips to the Jersey Shore, Florida, and Georgetown basketball games, at which his family had front row seats.
"Chris was by far the most generous person I've ever been around," Kahoe said. "He was always the kind of kid if you were out to dinner with him or with friends he would go out of the way to pay for the bill . He was so giving."
Price added: "He did it in the Chris Higgins fashion."
Carluccio said that she and her cousin ended every phone conversation with "let's do lunch." On one occasion when they did get around to grabbing a bite to eat, the plan was to get sandwiches at a deli. Chris wasn't having it. Instead, they went to the upscale Café Milano.
"That's just kind of the person he was. He just helped and made everyone happy," Carluccio said.
In November, Chris took 10 of his friends to his family's house at The Breakers in Palm Beach, Fla.
"Some of the stories we had were pretty ridiculous," recalled Kahoe. "[Chris] loved the nightlife. Because of him alone we met so many people we never would have met. He himself was a networker."
According to several of his friends, Chris took after his family with his generosity.
"The most incredible thing about Chris's family is the leaps and bounds they took to ensure that as a group of friends we were always taken care of," Rogers said. "The Higgins family has been extremely generous to us throughout Chris's life and he learned a lot from his parents."
Indeed, Davies remembers her brother as "the center of our family."
"We loved him so much that he brought us all closer," she said.
She recently named Higgins the godfather of her first child, Molly. "There was no question that Chris would be her godfather - for me, Chris would give her love, guidance and fun in her life," she said.
Davies noticed an immediate connection between Molly and Chris. "[Molly] would always go right to Chris, completely unafraid. He had that charismatic personality even with a newborn baby," she said.
Epstein said that Higgins' love for Molly was always readily apparent. "[Chris] was especially proud of his goddaughter," she said. "He always had the most recent picture Erin sent him of Molly as the background picture on his cell phone."
Chris called his mother his best friend, Kahoe said.
"She looked out for him," Kahoe added. "He'd tell me all the time, `My mom is literally one of the most important people in my whole life.'"
Chris also looked up to his father, Kahoe said, and "was very tight with his brother and sister."
"His sister was kind of similar to his mom, a friendly figure," Kahoe said. "If there were Issues with a girlfriend, whatever, she was always there for him."
And in turn, it is his family that knows Chris best.
"When I think of the real Chris that not everybody knows," Carluccio said, "I think of this little boy, going to the beach every day, rolling where the waves would break, covering himself with sand."
'Leaving a Legacy'
Carluccio spoke with Chris the Friday evening before he passed away. As usual, they ended the conversation with, "Let's do lunch."