On behalf of Daniel’s father, Jason Hollis, older sister, Kate Hollis, and our entire extended family I would like to express our family’s gratitude for the overwhelming support sent to us over the last week. It has become abundantly clear to us that Dan not only made the world brighter for his friends and family, but also for those he encountered.
Hard to ignore due to his height and strawberry-blonde hair, it was his infectious smile and dazzling blue eyes that danced with just a bit of mischief that pulled you in. To put it simply, Dan loved life and wanted others to share in his happiness. He often quoted his favorite artist Travis Scott in saying, “I want people to have the best time ever. Especially if they’re around me.”
Daniel was many things student, athlete, leader, artist, music lover, friend. He was just 19 years old and only beginning to experience the world around him. His family and the small town of Hopedale, Massachusetts provided a strong foundation from which he took off to explore the thrills of life in the city at Emerson College. He looked forward to traveling abroad and expanding his creative pursuits through clothing and marketing. While often receiving recognition for his play on the field or ice, it was the camaraderie of the team that Dan most loved about sports. For Daniel, life was about relationships and enjoying experiences with others.
As we mourn his loss, we take solace in the fact that Dan’s choice to be an organ donor saved the lives of three people on Thursday. We pray for a speedy recovery and long, prosperous life for the recipients and their families. May they use his gift to make the world a better place.
Our family would also like to thank the incredible nursing staff and the medical team at Brigham and Women’s Hospital for their care and support of Daniel during his final days.
We stand in full support of the Boston Police Department as they continue their investigation into this matter. We are confident they will find the individuals responsible for this tragic act of violence and bring them to justice.
In the meantime, we kindly ask that the media refrain from continuing to disturb Daniel’s family and friends during our time of mourning. We wish to focus our energy on celebrating his life and helping one another learn to live in a world with a little less sunshine.
Good morning. Our entire family continues to be overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and well wishes from those who knew Dan or knew of him. Many of you may be aware that Emerson College is holding a vigil for Daniel at 12pm today (October 3rd). The vigil is intended for the Emerson community. We will not be attending, but be there in spirit as we continue to process our incredible loss.
Our family will hold services and a celebration of Dan’s incredible life next weekend. We will provide details as they become available. In the meantime, we know many of you are holding impromptu gatherings and sharing stories of Dan and his antics. We ask that you find comfort in one another and the happy memories. We will gather formally in a little over a week’s time. Thank you for respecting our privacy and our wishes.
It is with the heaviest of hearts that Jay, Kate, and I share our latest update.
When Dan first arrived at the hospital on Saturday morning he was unresponsive, because he was young and healthy the medical team decided to perform emergency surgery. If it had been an older patient, they would not have even attempted the surgery.
He made it through the first surgery, but we were warned the next 72-hours would be critical as they learned more about how much damage was done. This morning we met with Dan’s medical team and the latest scans show extensive and unrepairable damage to large sections of his brain. Due to the damage to his brain stem, he will not regain consciousness. Additionally, there is damage to areas of the brain that control body functions such as breathing and his heart. He will not be able to sustain life, even with the aid of life support systems.
The medical team will continue to keep him comfortable and pain-free while we wait for family to arrive. Please continue to keep Dan in your thoughts and prayers. We ask that you focus on the positive: his infectious smile, his goofy sense of humor, his love for music, hockey, lacrosse and most importantly his love for his friends and family. The positive energy is making it to him and surrounding him with love while he is still with us.
We will continue to update this website as Dan’s journey nears its end. Please keep our family in your hearts during this difficult time.
Site created on September 29, 2019
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