Lowell Ensel was a 20-year-old sophomore at the University of Maryland, College Park, who passed away on May 11, 2015, after suffering a severe asthma attack in his dorm room. He was a talented and caring student who was majoring in government and politics and had a passion for filmmaking. His sudden death shocked and saddened his family, friends, classmates, professors, and the entire UMD community.
A Bright and Creative Mind
Lowell Ensel was born on July 8, 1994, in Takoma Park, Maryland, to Ellen Ensel and Fenwick Anderson. He graduated from Blair High School in 2013, where he was involved in the Communication Arts Program and the National Honor Society. He also won several awards for his films, including the Best Documentary Award at the 2013 Montgomery County Youth Media Festival for his film “In the Midterm”, which explored the impact of the 2010 midterm elections on young voters.
At UMD, Ensel was a member of the Honors College Humanities Program and the GVPT Honors Program. He was also an intern in the offices of Rep. Mike Bost of Illinois, who honored him during the May 13 House Session. According to the UMD website, Ensel was “a talented and caring GVPT major who was cherished by friends, faculty, staff and fellow students throughout the campus community.”
Ensel’s love for filmmaking was evident in his work and his aspirations. He had plans to pursue a career in film production or journalism after graduating from UMD. He also wanted to travel the world and make documentaries about different cultures and issues. He had a keen eye for storytelling and a unique perspective on the world.
A Devastating Loss
On May 11, 2015, Ensel was found unresponsive in his dorm room at Denton Hall by his roommate. He was rushed to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead. The cause of death was later determined to be a severe asthma attack, according to WUSA9. Ensel had a history of asthma, but his condition was not considered life-threatening.
Ensel’s death left a void in the hearts of many who knew and loved him. His family, friends, and classmates described him as a kind, funny, smart, and generous person who always had a smile on his face. He was also a loyal and supportive friend who was always there to help others. He touched many lives with his creativity, compassion, and enthusiasm.
The UMD community mourned Ensel’s death and celebrated his life with various events and tributes. On May 17, 2015, a student-led program and a screening of Ensel’s award-winning film were held at the Hoff Theater in the Adele H. Stamp Student Union. A visitation and viewing were also held at the Memorial Chapel that evening. On May 31, 2015, a memorial service was held at the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center in Silver Spring, Maryland.
Ensel’s legacy lives on through his family, friends, films, and the impact he made on the world. He is remembered as a bright and creative mind who had a lot to offer and a lot to achieve. His death is a tragic loss for the UMD community and beyond.