Remembering Brian Zamboni

March 5, 2019

Hello to our beloved MFT Community,

It is with heavy hearts that we’re writing with some heartbreaking news.  Brian Zamboni, a faculty member in our department since 2005, passed away last night.
For those of you who don’t know, Brian was a competitive stair climber. Brian was in Salt Lake City last weekend at a climbing event when he collapsed due to a massive heart attack.  They performed CPR, got him to the hospital, and put in a stint, but he didn’t wake up.  The medical team began an emergency cooling/hypothermia procedure and then warming in hopes that he would wake, but it wasn’t effective due to brain damage that extended down the brain stem.  They took Brian off life support yesterday and he passed away last night.  His family is in shock; Brian was the healthiest person we all knew.
They were able to gather most of his organs for donation for transplant and donation to research.  As you can imagine, Brian would love that.
He was beyond supportive to our students, our faculty, and to us.  He trained thousands of students between Saint Mary’s, Argosy, and the University of Minnesota.  All of us who know and love Brian know how hard working he was, how much he did with his time, how he was always willing to speak up for what was right, to be helpful, and how incredibly generous and kind he was.  Our last several conversations with Brian, as recently as last week, were all centered around the same theme: he was going above and beyond because he cares about students, their learning, their future clients, our community, and the colleagues he works with.  Brian was a man of integrity, good humor, a fierce mind, and a gentle heart.  He was always there when any of us needed him.  And that’s what we’ve heard over and over again from his friends, family, and colleagues these last few days: Brian believed in me, Brian was my best friend, Brian was so vibrant and full of life, Brian loved Saint Mary’s.  It’s difficult to imagine a world without him in it.
Brian’s family lives mostly in Colorado and services are expected to be offered there, but the family is uncertain if/when they will have services here in Minnesota.  We will keep you updated when we get more information.
For now, please reach out to those you know who had a connection with Brian.  Please hold him and his family in your prayers and thoughts.  We don’t presume to know what Brian would want, but as a professional who dedicated his life to teaching and learning, we imagine a way to honor Brian would be to hold on to what you’ve learned from him and to keep learning and asking good questions.  He was always great at that – – asking a question without presuming to know the response.
We value each one of you and are grateful for you.
Remembering Brian in Gratitude,
Sam and Sara