‘She was a phenomenal human’: UC Berkeley student Zoë Rogers dies at age 19

Zoe Rogers
Gwynedd Mercy Academy High School/Courtesy
Zoë Rogers, a UC Berkeley student who was also a goalkeeper on the campus field hockey team, will be remembered for her competitive spirit, wit and humor, according to Austin Pile, UC Berkeley field hockey associate head coach. Rogers is the daughter of Erica Chavez and Stephen Chavez.

UC Berkeley student Zoë Rogers will be remembered for advocating for justice, according to Theresa Fasano, Gwynedd Mercy Academy High School, or GMAHS, director of athletics.

Rogers, the daughter of Erica Jenkins-Chavez and Stephen Chavez, was a member of the executive board of the campus Black Student-Athlete Committee and a goalkeeper on the UC Berkeley field hockey team. Prior to being reported missing Oct. 27 near Hatfield, Pennsylvania, Rogers was last seen following her high school field hockey bus home in her car after a game, according to The Mercury News.

“It was just a real privilege to watch her power and her energy as a goalkeeper,” Fasano said. “She took that role in more ways than just being inside the cage; she really was the keeper on that team. For all four years, she was a phenomenal teammate.”

GMAHS held a memorial for Rogers, a 2019 graduate, Friday, and her field hockey club, the Main Line Field Hockey Club, held a memorial for her Sunday, according to Cal Athletics spokesperson Tim Miguel.

When campus remote learning began, Fasano said Rogers returned to her hometown and coached the GMAHS field hockey team, specifically training the goalkeepers on the team.

“Zoë was meant to come into all of our lives and touch so many through Gwynedd, then it’s a circle that will never end, and it’s timeless,” Fasano said. “Zoë Rogers will always remain timeless to all of us for that fact that we had the opportunity to witness her, and she touched so many of our hearts.”

At UC Berkeley, Rogers was one of four goalkeepers on the field hockey team. According to campus junior Maggie Blundi, the team will remember her as an incredible goalkeeper, a dedicated teammate and a patient and understanding friend.

Austin Pile, campus field hockey associate head coach, said he will remember Rogers’ competitive spirit, wit and humor. Pile added that the tragedy was especially painful because of the many lives Rogers touched, and a world without Rogers is “a worse place.”

“She was a tremendous student and athlete. But more importantly than all of that, she was a phenomenal human. She was caring, compassionate, thoughtful,” Pile said. “The feelings of this loss will not go away, and there will be a part of us missing forever. Eventually, we will find a way to move from mourning this loss to celebrating her life and honoring her memory.”

Contact Jasmine Lee at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter at @JasmineLee_02.