CSU professor dies in biking accident

Austin Fleskes

A Colorado State University professor of music has been confirmed dead by the Larimer County Coroner’s Office after a biking accident.

On Aug. 20, the LCCO responded to the intersection of Berthoud Parkway and Bunyan Avenue in investigation to a traffic fatality. Professor Gary Moody, who had been cycling, was involved in a collision with a tanker truck while southbound on Berthoud Parkway. 

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An autopsy was performed on Aug. 21 and the cause of death was multiple blunt force injuries and the manner of death was ruled an accident. 

Moody joined CSU in 1997 as an Assistant Professor of Double Reeds and Theory. According to a mass email from Benjamin Withers, dean of the College of Liberal Arts, Moody was promoted to the rank of professor in 2010 after being praised for his “outstanding teaching” and performances on both the oboe and bassoon. 

“He leaves behind a rich legacy in the memories of his colleagues and students, especially those in Music,” Withers wrote. 

Following the accident, the CSU Public Relations team also issued a response in an email to The Collegian.

“Our faculty, staff and students who knew Dr. Moody are deeply feeling this loss. The university extends its sincere condolences to Dr. Moody’s family and friends, and to his CSU family as well,” CSU PR wrote.

Nicky Tisdall, a senior Human Development and Family Studies major, said she had taken Moody’s Woodwind Techniques class, a class he offered to music education students. 

“He was a fantastic professor. He always pushed his students in the process,” Tisdall wrote in an email to The Collegian. “As a musician, Dr. Moody was about as good as they come. He was so talented and knowledgeable — it was inspiring to see him play.”

Tisdall added that she thinks she will remember Moody most for his love of music. 

“When he taught, you could just see how passionate he was about the subject he was teaching. Tisdall wrote. “He impacted so many lives and generations of students through his time at CSU and I’m thankful I got to be one of them.”  

Michelle Stanley, an associate professor of music who specializes in flute, was a colleague of Moody and worked within the woodwind area with him. 

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“Gary Moody was a highly curious, fiercely intelligent and a deeply committed teacher and musician,” Stanley wrote in an email to The Collegian. “His devotion to teaching was always impressive to his colleagues and students.”

Stanley added that Moody was a professor who worked very hard with his students. 

“He never gave up on his students and he worked  incredibly hard to help them grow as musicians and scholars,” Stanley wrote. “His artistry never faltered – he was always on top of his game as a bassoonist, oboist and music theorist.”

Stanley wrote that Moody taught her that there was always another way to look at a situation. She added that his influence on bassoon, oboe and music theory students was very impactful. 

“He impacted every one of their lives and that is so evident by the emails, calls and texts we’ve all received this week,” Stanley wrote. “While I lost a treasured colleague, these students lost their mentor.”

Olivia Martin, a senior music education major, said she came to know Moody when he would take over and help with lessons when professors were out. 

“Professor Moody was a really knowledgeable person and he was a fantastic musician and an even better educator,” Martin said. “He gave a lot of time to his students.”

“He was a fantastic professor. He always pushed his students in the process. As a musician, Dr. Moody was about as good as they come. He was so talented and knowledgeable — it was inspiring to see him play.” Nicky Tisdall, human development and family studies major

Martin added that Moody was good at helping people improve weakness that they had in order to become better musicians. She also expressed that one of the lessons she learned from him was the thought that everything someone does can connect back to something else. 

“His idea was that through your life you create this map of knowledge and this huge web of things, and that’s definitely what I feel like Dr. Moody did with his students,” Martin said. “He gave us a piece of his knowledge.” 

Collegian News Director and Collegian news reporter Austin Fleskes and Matt Bailey can be reached at news@collegian.com or on Twitter @Austinfleskes07 and @Mattbailey760