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850 people fill Mission Church today to celebrate the life of Deora Bodley

SANTA CLARA, Calif., September 21, 2001 - Hundreds of family, friends, and SCU community members gathered in Mission Santa Clara de Asís today for the memorial service for Deora Bodley. The 20-year old SCU junior was a passenger on the United Airlines that was downed by terrorists on Sept. 11 outside of Pittsburgh.

University President Paul Locatelli, S.J. was the presider of the service, which began at 1 p.m. following a press conference in which the father and mother shared their feelings with local media.

In his remarks Locatelli said, "We see the face of God in Deora's love for family and friends, in her service to the community, in her concern for others, and in her smile and laughter..."

One of the speakers at the service, Kathy Almazol, principal of St. Clare Elementary in Santa Clara, quoted several of the young students who knew Deora best as their reading tutor. According to Almazol, one student said after Sept.11, "There's another angel in heaven."

A choir of approximately 25 students from St. Clare sang "Amazing Grace" during the ceremony.

SCU student Bridget Madell described her former roommate: "She was my rock, my heart, my best friend -- my everything. She made an impact on so many lives, and the world is a better place because of her."

Both parents, father Derrill Bodley, and mother Deborah Borza, spoke today about their daughter's desire for peace and equality.

Borza said, "Let my daughter's passing be our call: To live our lives in such a way that makes the biggest difference possible in the lives of our fellow man, with no one left out. Let her light shine brightly for all people for all time." Borza, from San Diego, is an employee of Copley Information Services.

Bodley said that his daughter's wish would be to "work to solve the root problems that caused these events: the lack of respect and love by all human beings, the lack of peacefulness within each of us, the lack of sharing equitably and responsibly."

Two songs written and performed by the father were played during the service. Derrill is a music professor at University of the Pacific in Stockton and Sacramento City College.

The Deora Bodley Memorial Book Fund has been established by the University to benefit the elementary school. Contributions can be directed to: SCU - Deora Bodley Memorial Book Fund. Individuals who wish to donate books for elementary-age children can send them to Nancy Myrbeck at the SCU Career Center, and are asked to indicate inside the books that they are being donated in memory of Deora Bodley.

Outside of Mission Church there is a temporary memorial for Deora, displaying messages, pictures, flowers, and candles.

To view the family Web site for Deora, visit

For more information, contact Kelly Shenefiel in SCU Media Relations at 408-554-5125 or Images available at the University web site news and information pages,, or via e-mail on request.

Full text of Fr. Locatelli's memorial message:


About Santa Clara University

Santa Clara University is a private, Jesuit university with 4,300 undergraduate and 3,050 graduate students offering a rigorous undergraduate curriculum and nationally recognized business, engineering and law schools, plus interdisciplinary centers that promote ethics, social justice, and explore the impact of technology. For more information, visit


Deora Bodley, 1981-2001

Tags: bodley-service

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