In Memoriam: Chase Varney


Photo by: Rhiannan Ruef

Cam High students created a make-shift memorial in honor of Chase Varney.

Senior Chase Varney passed away unexpectedly on Oct. 7, 2014. He was born Feb. 11, 1997 and raised in Camarillo and is survived by his parents and 5 siblings.

Varney went to Monte Vista for middle school and had been deeply involved in sports since coming to Cam High. He was a member of the junior varsity football team for his first 2 years before making varsity wrestling his sophomore year.

Varney received a letter jacket for his accomplishments on the mat during his sophomore and junior years and was cherished by his teammates. “I barely talked to him, but he was so great to get along with,” said Ivan Quezada, junior and wrestler. “We wrestled together and he helped me out. He was just so nice and funny – a really good guy.”

Outside of school, Varney was an avid dirt biker and worked as a host at Bandits’ Bar and Grill. “He was very energetic and funny at work,” said Ms. Bailey Vandehei, Cam High alumnus and Varney’s co-worker at Bandits’. “We are sad to see him go.”

Varney planned to join the US Marine Corps once he graduated high school.

Those who knew him personally say they remember him for his humor and ability to cheer others up. “He always knew how to make people laugh,” said Perry Johnson, senior. “He was one of those kids I would look up to.”

Varney’s unexpected passing has affected numerous staff, faculty, and students at Cam High. “The loss of a precious life is a painful reminder to all of us of the struggles associated with adolescence,” said Mrs. Donna Maygren, AP Psychology teacher. “There are few who do not experience some challenges, struggles, and hard times.”

Cam High counselors are helping students cope with this loss by offering grief counseling in the career center during school hours for anybody who wants it. Counseling will be available to students “as long as it’s needed.”

According to his friends at Cam High, Varney was more than just a fellow classmate or student. “[He was] an amazing brother, friend, listener, and teacher to name a few,” said Trevor Rush, senior and wrestling teammate of Varney’s. “Many looked up to him on and off the mat.”

Varney had a reputation for hard work both in athletics and academics.

A candlelight vigil is being held in Varney’s honor on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at Eldred Lokker Park at 848 Vista Coto Verde in Camarillo.

Editors’ Note: Please feel free to comment about anything you wish to say about Chase Varney’s life or memories. The Stinger offers its sincerest condolences to the Varney family and those affected by this event.

Trevor Rush contributed to this story.