Andrew Dwyer ’05 was a late-night eater and a feeder of friends.
One night last week at the Delta Kappa Epsilon house, for example, Dwyer asked those gathered if they wanted anything to eat. After ordering food for everyone who wanted it, Dwyer picked up the tab.
His friends say this kind of generosity was typical of Dwyer, who was well known for his friendliness and concern for others.
At The Hotchkiss School, the Connecticut boarding school he attended before Yale, Dwyer was known for taking care of his classmates.
“He was famous in the dorms here at Hotchkiss for providing sustenance for his friends at late hours, all hours of the day,” said Chris Burchfield, Dwyer’s senior year English teacher and varsity lacrosse coach. “A really fun part of the tradition for Andrew and all of his buddies was getting together late at night, probably having studied for several hours and taking a break, cramming into one room and making hamburgers or sandwiches or something like that. It established a real bond between that group of friends.”
A native of Hobe Sound, Fla., Dwyer planned to major in political science and, friends said, “never met a prank he didn’t like.” He was nicknamed “Dogg” by his friends at Yale and always was best known for his interest in athletics and spending time with his friends.
Dwyer spent Thursday night in New York City with friends from DKE. He was returning to campus with eight DKE brothers when the sport utility vehicle they were driving collided with a tractor-trailer. Dwyer and three other students died of injuries resulting from the crash.
At Yale, Dwyer’s deepest interests lay with the “simple pleasures” of life, friends said. He especially enjoyed his involvement with his fraternity, as well as sports and opportunities to relax with friends.
“He always really lifted everyone’s spirits,” said Tony Bellino ’05, Dwyer’s roommate. “He was everyone’s friend.”
Andrew Levy ’05, a close friend, said Dwyer genuinely cared about the way others felt and that he brought out the best in people.
“The thing that made Andrew unique was that he liked everyone. I never heard him say a bad word about anyone,” Levy said.
Bellino described him as an avid golfer who also enjoyed playing paddle tennis with his family. Dwyer would also play squash regularly with Eric Diamond ’05, another of his suitemates.
“He was a sports nut,” Bellino said. “He was like a sports encyclopedia.”
Frequently, Dwyer would regale friends with sports facts while watching games on television, his suitemates said. Often he would mention background information before the announcer did.
Dwyer was also an avid TV buff and loved to relax with suitemates watching “Seinfeld,” “The Simpsons” and “Joe Millionaire” — which his suitemates said he watched seven times. Last Christmas, he was excited to receive a TiVo, a device that allows viewers to record, pause, or rewind television program.
A particular favorite of Dwyer’s was “The Lord of the Rings,” the newest installment of which he saw as soon as it opened on Wednesday, Dec. 18, despite the fact that it was finals week.
“All of us had finals on Wednesday, and we went to the 12:05 a.m. showing,” Diamond said.
Dwyer’s teachers and coaches at Hotchkiss also remembered Dwyer as fun-loving and upbeat.
“His main interest was people. He was very much a people person. He had a smile on his face and a twinkle in his eye most of the time,” said John Virden, Dwyer’s faculty adviser at Hotchkiss.
Burchfield said he was not surprised to hear that when Dwyer spent time away from school, it was with a group of friends. He said Dwyer’s most unique gift was the way in which he connected with others.
“He was rarely without a grin on his face and he had this sort of charming way of glancing at you with this half a grin that you knew would be a full grin the minute he made eye contact with you,” Burchfield said. “It was just funny the way he could reach you.”
During day to day life at Hotchkiss, Dwyer enjoyed spending time with his many close friends, particularly fellow athletes. Burchfield recalled that Dwyer was especially close to his lacrosse teammates.
“The joy of playing and being on a team was where Andrew’s heart was, and he was a loved teammate,” Burchfield said.
Burchfield said Dwyer was a strong student and a talented writer who was never afraid to say what he thought during class discussions.
Both Virden and Burchfield recalled Dwyer’s sense of humor. While Virden said Dwyer “never met a prank he didn’t love,” Dwyer could also thoughtfully incorporate humor into many other situations.
“He could make a comment that was funny but that was also relevant to what was being discussed, and that was a pretty amazing talent,” Burchfield said.
Dwyer’s friends at Yale said he was very busy with DKE events during the week after winter break, but also continued to spend time with them and be there when they needed encouragement.
“The last time I saw the kid, he was trying to cheer me up,” said C.J. Orrico ’05, Dwyer’s suitemate.
Many other friends remembered Dwyer’s efforts to lift their spirits, whether it was by inviting them to go out for a good time, bringing them a snack, or simply offering a bright smile and some comic relief.
“He was the most loving, caring, compassionate person I ever met,” Levy said. “Ever.”
Andrew Dwyer is survived by his parents and two older sisters. A service in his memory will be at 11 a.m. today at St. Matthew’s Church in Bedford, N.Y.