Memorial set for AHS grad who died in China

A public memorial service for Ethan Townsend will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday at Ashland Middle School.

Townsend died two weeks ago, when he and a friend were overtaken by a rockslide while hiking in China. Townsend was 24 years old.

He is survived by his mother and father, Mary and Hal Townsend, and his sister, Hannah. The Townsends moved to Ashland in 1990.

Townsend graduated from Ashland High School in 2003, participating in a number of academic competitions, including Science Bowl, leading his team to the national finals in Washington, D.C. his senior year.

Townsend was studying toward his Ph.D in physics from the University of Colorado at the time of his death, having earned his master's degree in mechanical engineering at Stanford.

The service will be held in the main gymnasium at AMS, located at 100 Walker Ave. A reception is scheduled following the service. There, friends and acquaintances can talk and share their memories of Ethan. The family has said that everyone in the community is invited, not just those who knew him personally.

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