The Notre Dame Law School community came together Wednesday evening to remember 1L Travis McElmurry, who passed away during spring break. McElmurry, 30, was from Granada Hills, Calif., and a graduate of Pepperdine University.
Students, faculty, and staff celebrated McElmurry’s life with a memorial Mass at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart. The Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., president of the University of Notre Dame, presided, and the Rev. Pat Reidy, C.S.C., the Law School’s chaplain, preached.
Afterward, the community gathered for a reception in the Eck Commons at Notre Dame Law School.
Bruce Huber, an associate professor of law and Robert & Marion Short Scholar at the Law School, offered comments in McElmurry’s memory at the reception.
“It is often said – and for very good reason – that one of the most enduring hallmarks of Notre Dame is the strength of the community that exists here,” Huber said. “Community brings us great good. In community we find friendship, we find love, we establish purpose and direction, we sharpen each other, we support and uphold each other.
“We receive so many gifts in community that we sometimes forget that communities also and inevitably endure loss. Communities suffer. It is as though by sharing our lives with so many others, we gain enormous blessing and yet simultaneously render ourselves that much more vulnerable to pain and to grief.”
Huber said his hope is that, in those moments, the community will grow stronger and more resilient.
“It is in our mutual regard, our caring for each other, in the bearing of each other’s burdens, that we receive the very outstretched hand of God,” he said. “In your companionship – simply by treading a path together these three years – you will be enriched immeasurably. And all the more so, to the extent that, to this companionship, you add sacrifice, you add a willingness to share a kind-if-difficult word, to extend a helping hand, to bend a listening ear, to shed tears with and among each other.
“In the divine economy,” Huber said, “it is through sacrifice that we are somehow made whole.”
McElmurry grew up in Arizona and Utah before moving to California with his best friend and high-school sweetheart, Stefanie Anderson, whom he later married.
He graduated with honors from Pepperdine in 2015. While he was in school, he started Bravery2Business, an organization that helped veterans transition to business careers. He had a passion for empowering people through entrepreneurship, according to his family, and he planned to start a consulting firm to assist people in establishing and growing their own companies.
McElmurry is survived by his wife, his parents, seven siblings, and many other family members and friends across the country and abroad.