Born in Montpellier, France, Morgan had been on three continents before he was three weeks old: North America where his maternal grandparents lived, Africa where his paternal grandparents lived and Europe where his immediate family lived. At seven, Morgan moved to the U.S. with his parents and two younger sisters. Morgan had an unrivaled love of life. He excelled at anything he tried. He began studying Judo when he was four, earning his black belt in Tae Kwan Do at the age of 11. He was active in track (discuss and shot put) and football. As a senior in high school, Morgan was an integral defensive lineman on the Cactus Shadow football team. Morgan was one of two recipients of the Marine Corps Distinguished Scholar Athlete Award for Cactus Shadows. After graduating from high school, Morgan attended college at the University of Arizona, where he joined the cheerleading squad. Bilingual in English and French, he decided to major in East Asian Studies/Chinese after spending his sophomore year in Nanjing, China. While Morgan was in China, he participated in pre-Olympic games through his university where he placed first in shot put out of students from thirty other participating schools.
The summer before he died, Morgan spent six weeks studying and traveling in France with a college exchange program. He returned to China that fall to study again in Nanjing through the University of Arizona. His group planned a trip to Tibet and Morgan was thrilled to participate. While ascending to 19,000 feet to reach a base camp at Mt. Everest, Morgan suffered from severe altitude sickness. With no medical attention and no way to get him down the mountain quickly, he passed away on October 20th, 2009.
Morgan’s death was senseless and avoidable. If there had been better safeguards in place for these students studying abroad, Morgan would never have died. It is wonderful that the ClearCause Foundation serves as an advocate for our children while they are far from home.
Morgan is missed by all of his friends and family, especially by his two younger sisters who miss his gentle teasing and kind good nature. He was the protector of the weak and the life of every social event. Morgan was everyone’s friend. His amazing bear hugs gave him the nickname “Big Bear”. He hugs me from the inside whenever I feel down. He had a positive impact on everyone he ever met. His friends and family were blessed by every moment they had with him. Thank you, Morgan, for being such a wonderful son.
Written by Morgan’s mother, Elizabeth Boisson