Recent UC Berkeley alum Xiaoqian Lim dies at 22

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Recent UC Berkeley graduate Xiaoqian Lim, who was known for her energetic personality and enthusiasm, died on Nov. 22. She was 22.

Lim’s death was ruled a suicide by the Alameda County Coroner’s Office, but the exact cause is being withheld out of respect for the family.

As an undergraduate student, Lim had a strong interest in acting and performed in a number of plays put on by the UC Berkeley BareStage Productions theater company.

Elena Wagoner, who directed Lim in a production of “The Territory,” remembers her as someone who always brought a positive attitude and energy to rehearsals for the play.

“She was always a joy to work with,” Wagoner said. “She brought great thoughts and great contribution to rehearsals. She always had a positive attitude and was down to try new things.”

Lim was dedicated to acting and the company, attending all of her rehearsals and showing up for every BareStage performance, according Erik Johnson, who directed Lim in a production of “The Comedy of Errors.”

“She was a big part of the BareStage community,” Johnson said. “She loved being on stage and loved to act — she felt really alive when she was acting.”

In addition to acting, Lim was heavily interested in writing, having written for several publications, including UC Berkeley’s fashion-based BARE Magazine. Miraya Berke, who wrote with Lim for the magazine’s blog, recalled the time they reviewed thrift shops in the area and went to the American Cancer Society Discover Shop in Oakland, where they dressed up in various outfits and had their own “mini photoshoot in the shop.”

News of Lim’s death came as a shock to the people who knew her.

“I was very surprised,” Johnson said, “She didn’t give off warning signs or anything like that. She was very, truly happy when she was with us and her friends.”

Before coming to UC Berkeley, Lim attended Casa Roble High School in Orangevale, Calif., and graduated with the class of 2008.

A memorial service was held on Wednesday night in Lim’s memory at the Daiso Japan on Telegraph Avenue, where she worked after graduating.

“I really want to stress that Xiaoqian was just not this smiley face and positive energy — she was a lot more than that” Wagoner said. “She had a lot of substantive character — she was very kind, attentive and thoughtful … I think the world has lost something important.”

Contact Andy Nguyen at [email protected].