In memory of Daniel J. Watt

photo of daniel watt

We write with deep sadness to inform you of the sudden loss of a cherished member of our Residence Life and Student Affairs family early Tuesday morning. Daniel Watt, RC of Edens Quad and former RC of Kilgo Quad, was killed in a car accident. Daniel was the passenger in an Uber and the only fatality in the crash. 

Daniel had been an integral and steady presence for many community members at Duke in the past year. He was a well-loved and vibrant part of the HRL team, and he will be missed by many students, colleagues, and friends across campus. A warm, engaging, and wry spirit, Daniel played an invaluable role supporting the HRL team, residents, and colleagues -- a leader who quietly transformed others’ lives on a daily basis. Daniel came to Duke after working at both University of Miami, where he earned his master’s degree, and University of Pittsburgh, where he earned his bachelor’s degree. The Miami and Pitt campus communities share in our sorrow, as do Daniel’s loved ones, family, and friends from his hometown of New York City.

We recognize this sudden news may come as a shock to many of you. Please take care of yourselves, reach out to one another for support,  and do not hesitate to call upon the resources for staff and students outlined below. Daniel's family and girlfriend, Elizabeth, are planning to host a small memorial service at Duke later this week for Daniel's Duke community to begin to reflect together on Daniel’s life and spirit. When we have details of this memorial service, we will be certain to let you know.

Thank you for joining with us in sending our heartfelt support and love to Daniel’s loved ones and friends near and far today.

A memorial service will be held on Thursday, August 5 from 6-7 p.m. at the Duke Chapel (via ADA entrance near Duke Divinity School). A reception on the Plaza will follow.

Update 8/13/21:

If you were unable to make the live service, here is a video of the livestream: 



Please know that Student Affairs resources are available to support all impacted students, including: DukeReachCAPSBlue Devils Care

Faculty and staff, please reach out to us or to Duke Personal Assistance Services for support in the days ahead.