Obituary: Catherine Marroquin, Arts & Sciences student, 24

Catherine Marroquin

Catherine Marroquin, a junior studying neuroscience and psychology in Arts & Sciences at Washington University in St. Louis, died Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2024. She was 24. 

A bright and gifted student, Marroquin loved exploring new disciplines, from chemical and biological sciences to business to literature, and consistently made the dean’s list, said her mother, Audrey Marroquin. She also was committed to helping others, serving as a tutor and mentor to her classmates and siblings and as a volunteer for pediatric cancer patients at Mercy Hospital in St. Louis and at Christus St. Vincent Regional Medical Center in Santa Fe, N.M. 

“Cate had a creative mind, an analytical mind, but what made her truly beautiful was not only her insight and exceptional intellect, but her empathy and care for others,” Audrey Marroquin said. “She was a loving soul who wanted to make the world a better place.”

Friends and family also said Marroquin possessed a quick wit and fierce sense of justice. From a young age, she worked to protect the environment, joining efforts to save the grey wolf and urging the White House to keep the grizzly bear protected under the Endangered Species Act.

Marroquin returned to Washington University after a two-year leave. Brian Carpenter, a professor of psychological and brain sciences in Arts & Sciences and her adviser, said she approached the new year with hope and resolve, despite her struggle with depression.

“I always appreciated the opportunity to talk to Catherine,” Carpenter said. “She was a very thoughtful student, careful when planning her academic schedule, balancing requirements with her intellectual interests and passions.” 

Marroquin’s passions were as diverse as her academic pursuits — pumpkin spice lattes and walks on the beach, baking and sketching, hiking and fashion. She recently had rediscovered her love of running and would go to the gym daily, said her brother, Ian Marroquin, a senior studying applied math and economics in Arts & Sciences.

“She always tried to be kind to people and had a hopeful vision of the world,” Ian Marroquin said. 

Marroquin also was a gifted writer, writing essays and poetry in both French and English. Audrey Marroquin especially treasures one essay about pens, which showcased her daughter’s talents of self-expression and innovation.  

“Pens have taught me that possibilities are endless,” she wrote. “With infinite permutations of the twenty six letters of the alphabet, I recognized that everything I wrote could be completely original and in that realization, I found my voice.”

In addition to her mother and her brother Ian, Marroquin is also survived by siblings Nicole, Alexa and Xander.

Students who would like mental health support or supportive counseling are encouraged to contact Habif Health and Wellness Center or to call 314-935-6666. TimelyCare physicians and counselors also are available to students 24/7. Learn more about TimelyCare and download the app. Faculty and staff may access the Employee Assistance Program.

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