Athens - Andrew Thomas Morgan, aged 31, of The Plains, passed from this life in the Emergency Department of O'Bleness Hospital on November 4, 2021. Andy is survived by his mother, Leeanna Morgan (Andrew DePalma), his father, The Rev. Dr. E. F. Michael Morgan (Veronica Failoc-Morgan) and his sister, Abigail, with whom he shared his birthday.
Andy was an athletic child and excelled in rec league level soccer, basketball, and baseball. He skied well. There were early signs as far back as elementary school that Andy's mental health was not as robust as his physical health, but he persisted and lettered in track and cross-country at Lower Merion High School outside of Philadelphia. He played trombone in the school orchestra. He loved amusement parks and he was a good chess player.
Andy was hospitalized in a psychiatric unit for the first time in November of 2007. With a great deal of determination, he was able to complete his senior project and graduate from high school on time in 2008. Andy hit a period of stability in 2009 and was able to live independently for a few years, albeit with regular family support and intervention. During this time he enjoyed attending churches of various denominations, hung out at The Gathering Place, attended Friday Night Life, played in the Communiversity Band and was a regular at karaoke night at the Smiling Skull. His most-performed song? It's My Life by Bon Jovi. He rode his bicycle all over town.
Andy loved music, both playing it and listening to it. He played trombone and keyboards and knew all the lyrics to Les Mis, Cats, Mamma Mia and more. He also liked to write and filled journals with his thoughts and ideas. He was revising a short story he was proud of when he died. Andy could be quite funny and would deliver little quips when least expected. His sister describes him as funny, stubborn and fearless. The trajectory of Andy's life would have been quite different had he not developed such a severe form of treatment-resistant schizophrenia.
2014 was a difficult year for Andy. He began a hospitalization at Appalachian Behavioral Healthcare that fall which ended in March of 2020, just in time for the pandemic lockdown. Many of the activities he had looked forward to resuming were shut down or severely restricted, which contributed to a sense of isolation. Andy liked to feel part of something: a team, a club, a church, a chorus. He wanted to fully engage in society, but his illness often got in the way. Andy (or Andrew as he was known to many in the community), became more reserved as his mental illness progressed in spite of the efforts of everyone who tried to help him. Andy's family thanks everyone at Hopewell, O'Bleness, and ABH who cared for Andy over the years, as well as the many community members who looked out for him. Your kindness is appreciated.
A public memorial service will be held at the Church of the Good Shepherd, 64 University Terrace, at 1 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 14 with the Rev. Deborah Woolsey officiating, There will be a reception with light refreshments following the service. Please feel welcome to attend. Covid prevention protocols will be followed.
Andy's body was cremated. His ashes will be interred in the columbarium on the grounds of Good Shepherd. Andy was deeply religious and believed he would find the peace he so urgently sought in Heaven. Memorial contributions may be made to NAMI at namiathensohio.org or to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention at afsp.org. Arrangements are with Jagers & Sons Funeral Home. Please share a memory, a note of condolence or sign the online register at www.jagersfuneralhome.com. Andrew Morgan