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Community Support Bolsters Wiseman Family

Tributes on Facebook and at Acalanes High pay homage to sophomore Colin Wiseman, who died Jan. 3.

There has been an outpouring of support from the Lafayette and Acalanes High community for Colin Wiseman, a 15-year-old sophomore who died suddenly on Thursday, Jan. 3.

Many students wore green to Acalanes High on Monday. This was a nod to the time Colin came to school wearing frog footie pajamas in bright green "to make people laugh," said his father, Graham Wiseman.

Friends assembled a Facebook page, "Remembering Colin Wiseman," which had 1,006 likes as of Jan. 10. "A thousand people have liked it, and that completely blows me away," said Graham Wiseman.

Colin Wiseman was troubled, according his father. "To prevent tragedies of this sort, I encourage others to talk to their children and get help," said Graham Wiseman. The family encourages memorial contributions to the Contra Costa Crisis Center.

A memorial service is scheduled for 11 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 12, at Lafayette Orinda Presbyterian Church, 49 Knox Dr., Lafayette.

Graham Wiseman said his son was "selfless," which he has found out more about as friends have come to the house and shared memories. "If somebody was picking on another boy, he would step in and punch the bully," said Wiseman. "Of course, you don't get away scot-free doing that … It cost him."

He added, "He was just a wonderful giving boy who inside was sad but didn't want to share that sadness."

Colin is survived by his parents, Graham and Caroline Wiseman, and his sister Nicole, of Lafayette. Colin Wiseman was born Feb. 8, 1997.

Graham Wiseman went to Acalanes High and Caroline went to Miramonte High in Orinda.  When they were first married, they lived in Walnut Creek and Pleasant Hill, and when Colin was born moved back to Lafayette. "With this (Colin's death), we knew why we needed to be back in Lafayette," said Graham Wiseman.

Colin was active with the Lamorinda Rugby club and Boy Scouts.

Counselors at Stanley Middle School and Acalanes High have been busy talking to students about Colin's premature death, Wiseman said. On Facebook, the first suggestion was for students to wear black to Acalanes on Monday to commemorate Colin, but other friends — remembering the bright footie pajamas — suggested green, Wiseman said. The pajamas were a birthday gift from Colin's friend.

JK January 11, 2013 at 11:02 PM
This is a tragedy. I hope Acalanes is investigating whether bullying and exclusion played a role, and will be taking concrete steps to address social isolation on campus. My Freshman daughter keeps pointing out to me how little people seem to care about the suicide of Colin, an outlier, when compared to the outpouring following the also tragic alchol and drug-related death of a popular former student last year. I can't disagree with her point. We need to value everyone equally. We can't let our kids think that no one cares, unless you are popular or athletic.
lucid dawn January 12, 2013 at 03:04 AM
We must practice and spread radical inclusion!! Colin was a great sweet creative soul who kept a lot to himself.. what is severely missing from our educational system and society in general are the how to's on dealing with emotional intelligence and communication. Rejection and isolation, being ignored, will always add up to those individuals (or parts of ourselves) acting out (often violently or with illness) on the self or others.. We are so heartbroken that Colin felt like he couldnt reach out.. My daughter is missing him, this very sensitive creative group of kids that loved him are left stunned.. Im not sure that kids realize the finality of death when they make this dramatic choice. We could also as a society open up conversations about death and be a lot healthier for it. I pray that the gift that Colin has left behind is one of us all being closer and nicer to each other and opening up communication about these things & the deep injuries involved in homogenization. It is quite challenging to be unique and accepted generally in this Stanley/ Acalanes school system. No one can be ignored or rejected without suffering and NO ONE SUFFERS ALONE. Ever. We are all feeling it now. Blessed be lovely Wiseman family. You have always held a special place in our hearts Nicole and beautiful mother Caroline. May you find strength in your spirit and what you have in each other. Its a sad and beautiful world. All love.
Josh Goldman January 13, 2013 at 01:45 AM
Did he have mental problems? Why wasn't he attended to by counselors and psychiatrists? Rest in peace buddy.
Caroline Wiseman January 26, 2013 at 09:09 AM
Not an appropriate question.
Katie curiel April 25, 2013 at 04:08 AM
Aww I knew Colin, my name is katie go to school at Stanley middle school and I knew him when I was in 6th grade. He always was trying to make people laugh, he hung out with Lindsey lolli lily and I

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