NNSL Photo/Graphic

Canadian North

Home page text size buttonsbigger textsmall textText size Email this articleE-mail this page

'One of a kind'
Friends and family remember Andy Carpenter as a positive person who touched people's hearts

Chris Puglia
Northern News Services
Published Friday, September 13, 2013

For those who knew Andy Carpenter, he was a hard person not to like.

NNSL photo/graphic

Andy Carpenter Jr. will be remembered by family and friends as someone who enjoyed sports, hunting and was always positive. - photo courtesy of Facebook

“As a person, there was no explaining what kind of a guy he was,” said Inuvik's Chris Church, one of Caprenter's childhood friends. “He would make sure every one smiled first and was never a negative person. He was more than just a friend, he was like a brother to many and, as for me, my hero because he enlightened many people's lives and left a great mark in everybody's hearts. Just a one of a kind.”

Carpenter died on Sept. 6 when he drowned after a canoeing accident on Jackfish Lake in Norman Wells. He had only moved to the community to live with his father a few weeks before from Inuvik where he had lived since age 10, according to his cousin Andrea Keogak.

Keogak, who lives in Sachs Harbour where Carpenter lived before moving to Inuvik to attend school and live with his mother, Kelly Stewart, has fond memories of her cousin. She said he will be remembered for his “happy go-lucky” personality.

“He was always willing to help,” said Keogak. “He was close with all his friends and loved his sister and his cousins. A lot of his cousins were his best friends.”

Family alone gave Carpenter a large network of friends, she said. His extended family consisted of 20 cousins.

Keogak, who babysat Carpenter from the time he was a newborn to the age of eight, said the young man's dedication to his family was notable.

He enjoyed hunting, she said. He would also share the fruits of his hunts with his family members.

In fact, Keogak said one of her most prominent memories of her cousin comes from a family hunting trip one spring. She said her and her boyfriend were out on the trip and about 10 minutes behind the group when they came across Carpenter on his way back to camp.

“He had the saddest look on his face,” she said.

Carpenter had lost all his shells through a hole in his backpack and was making the trip back to camp for more. Fortunately, Keogak's boyfriend had extra shells.

“The look on his face, he just lit up,” she said, once again referring to one of her cousin's best known traits. “He was always smiling,”

Aside from hunting, Carpenter was also avid into sports. Church said he was an amazing soccer goalie and liked to box and participate in mixed martial arts.

“The most important one has to be the senior super soccer banner he made us win,” said Church. “He practically led the team to the victory with help of his top scorers, of course. But, I think, that's the most important one because it shows that you can go to a big tournament with a small team and still win. He had total confidence in everybody and made sure everybody played their best. He was a great motivator.”

Keogak said a memorial service is being planned in Inuvik to remember Carpenter and the funeral will be held in Sachs Harbour.

He is survived by his father, Andy Carpenter, mother, Kelly Stewart, and sister, Latisha.

E-mailWe welcome your opinions. Click here to e-mail a letter to the editor.