In Memory of Helen Hastings, College First-Year

The staff of The Oberlin Review extends our deepest condolences to the family and friends of College first-year Helen Hastings, who died Jan. 18, 2021 in Houston, Texas.

Among her friends, Hastings was known for her laughter, enthusiasm, and compassion. Hastings was interested in helping treat misophonia, a condition that causes people to be distressed by particular sounds, and she intended to study neuroscience, psychology, and art. 

“Helen had this really bubbly, really energetic personality and a good sense of humor,” said College first-year Zach Gershon, recalling evenings spent playing card games in Dascomb Hall, where Hastings’ infectious laughter would cheer everyone. 

Hastings was an artist and a scientist, and she dived headfirst into the Oberlin community. In her first semester, she gathered a close-knit group of friends who felt deeply supported by her. 

“I was grateful to have both empathy and excitement from her,” said College first-year Noelle Lara, recalling Hastings’ kind words in difficult moments. “To top it all off, she did it while having the cutest llama socks you would find. She generally just had a great fashion sense. Thank you Helen for being a first friend. This won’t be the last time we celebrate you.” 

Hastings is survived by her parents, Susan and Philip, and her older brothers Jeffery, Jeremy, Adrian, and Simon.