December 17, 1984-Ocober 1, 2018
It was December 17, 1984 on a snowy night in Portland, Oregon when Luke Elliott Anderson was born. His parents Wendy Charlebois and Michael Anderson and his sister Rebecca welcomed this beautiful boy into the world with love and anticipation. Sadly, addiction and depression led to his death. This very precious man died on October 1, in Lamoille Canyon.
When Luke was just nine months old, he and his family moved to Karlsruhe, Germany where he spent the next four and a half years eating wiener schnitzel, wearing lederhosen and traveling to magical places. Luke’s sister, Rebecca loved playing with him and he followed her everywhere. Luke developed a friendship with a little Turkish boy named Toigun and even though they couldn’t speak to one another in a common language they somehow learned to play the games little boys play with one another.
In 1990, Luke and his family moved to Nevada, living in Sparks and Elko. He attended Catherine Dunn Elementary, and Dilworth Middle School where he was a good student. His curiosity led him to explore student plays, choir and leadership skills. His favorite passion was baseball and he was good at it! It was during these years that Luke developed friendships that lasted throughout his short lifetime. Bobby, O’Nell, Anthony, Brian and Lucas became his posse as they rode their bikes, played basketball and insisted on multiple campouts and sleepovers. These heady days taught Luke about loyalty and the importance of being part of a tribe.
During summers Luke and his family traveled to Elko to spend time with his extended family. He loved seeing Uncle George and Aunt Cherie. The “cabin” in Lamoille Canyon was one of his favorite places. He spent many hours there and loved exploring, roasting marshmallows, and singing songs.
Some of Luke’s best days were the Thanksgiving holidays spent in Elko. It was during these times that he piled on with all his cousins, in Aunt Cherie’s basement to play video games and learn cousin secrets. Snowmobiling in the canyon, ballgames, and of course lots of food were all part of one of Luke’s favorite tradition. He loved stuffing!
In 1999 Luke and his family moved to Elko where Luke attended Elko High School. Here too, he was a good student. He was inducted into the National Honor Society. He played Varsity baseball and was Captain of the Varsity Soccer Team. He graduated in 2003. While in high school Luke continued to make new friends, who enriched him and reinforced his sense of loyalty and love.
The years after high school were a challenge for Luke while he tried to discover what it was he wanted in life. He attended Feather River College in Susanville CA for one year, playing on the baseball and soccer team and it was during this time that his addiction to alcohol began.
After attending Great Basin College for a semester, Luke’s work life became very important to him. In 2006 he began working at Vega Construction where he called Dude Vega ”the boss”. He learned some very important skills here. Vega Construction was preparing him to go to work at Newmont where Luke really shined as a mechanic. As usual, Luke developed close friendships with many of his coworkers, Steven, Andrew, Alex, Justin, Kris, Tyler, Kevin, Pat and Emilio and many more. They have shared many wonderful stories about Luke with his family.
On June 13, 2013 Luke and his wife Ashley Adams, welcomed his beautiful baby Deziray into the world. Luke loved this little girl and loved swimming with her, playing hide and seek, Hi Ho Cherry 0, and giving his beloved dog Lady, baths.
Unfortunately, Luke’s addiction progressed even though he sought treatment. His marriage to Ashley ended and Luke became more isolated and depressed. That is what addiction does to people. In 2017 Luke married Vanessa whom he deeply cared for.
He is survived by so many family and friends who loved and miss him. His beautiful five year old daughter, Deziray, his parents Wendy Charlebois and Michael Anderson, (”Pops”) His sister Rebecca Maynard, his niece Sierra Maynard, nephews, Julian and Lonnie Maynard, Aunts and uncles Cherie Atwood, Robin, Stover (Phil Bristol) David and Chris Charlebois, Glenda Striegal, David and Jane Cobb, Richard Cobb, Cathy Vega, Jason and Becca Stover, Zach and Janet Vega, Landon and Linsey Vega, Caitlyn Cobb, Ryan Cobb, Callan and Jake Kanev, Ross Cobb and Megan Cobb. Close family friends, Dyril, and Martha Bernius, their daughters Hilary Bernius-Griffin and Erin Bernius, and Karen Fleck.
There will be a gathering to remember Luke on Saturday, October 27 at 2pm in the Great Basin College Solarium, 1500 College Parkway on Chilton Circle next to the theatre. Luke’s favorite food is pizza so pepperoni will be plentiful! Please come and share your favorite memories of Luke.
Addiction and depression numbed Luke to the reality that friends and family loved him and had hope for him. Addiction led to Luke’s tragic death and has led to the death of so many fine young people. Addiction affects people everywhere. It is a public health problem that deserves all the attention our nation can provide. Addicts need our love, hope and help. It takes courage to dive into the fray.
“A man who drinks too much on occasion is still the same man as he was sober. An alcoholic, a real alcoholic, is not the same man at all. You can’t predict anything about him for sure except that he will be someone you never met before.”
Raymond Chandler, The Long Goodbye
Instead of flowers please consider donating to help prevent suicide to Division of Public & Behavioral Health l BHS-Office of Suicide Prevention Attn: Janett Massolo, 4150 Technology Way, Suite 101 Carson City, NV 89706 or online at www.dhhs.nv.gov http:/suicideprevention.nv.gob