A bright smile, a light in the life of so many and a brave individual who never stopped living life to the fullest, doing his best to make the world a better place. On Nov. 18, 16-year old Amir Alchabaoun was finally able to rest after a two-year struggle with a relentless brain tumor. He had been in and out of the hospital, yet despite these circumstances, he never failed to maintain an optimistic perspective.
His impact on Northwood is undeniable; though only attending during his freshman year, Amir made a deep impression on several communities, from the instrumental music department as a tenor saxophonist in band to the athletics program as a lively player on the boys basketball team.
When asking any of Amir’s closest friends or even anyone that knew him, there is one quality they all remember: his unforgettable energy and positivity.
“Freshman year, I sprained my ankle and Amir would stay with me at our athletic trainer’s place every day to make sure I was okay and having a good time, since he knew I wasn’t doing so great. He would make some jokes and even get in trouble for distracting me from the exercises I had to do, but it always made my day.
Everyone who knew Amir will vouch that he never failed to make anyone smile, and that is something I cannot emphasize enough. Being able to break silence with his infectious laugh was his strong suit. He always put others first, and was there for the people he cared about through thick and thin. I will continue to look up to his good heart and selflessness every day of my life, and I’m so grateful for the happy memories I made with him. I wish I could thank him for everything he has done in the short time he was here with us, and most importantly for being a light in this world. He really was the best of us, and will be dearly missed.” —Layan Alasseel (11)
“Amir was one of my closest friends. He was always able to cheer everyone up and make people laugh. Something about his personality was infectious. It was impossible not to smile when you were around him. He was one of the few people you meet in life who everyone truly loved. Some of my best memories were just going to his house and playing Xbox or going to the park to play basketball.” —Arya Kumar (11)
“It didn’t matter if I was having one of my worst days. Amir’s smile, his laugh, his dumb but funny jokes would always lighten up my day. I love him and miss him everyday.” —Nikolai Semerdijev (11)
“Amir had touched every person he got the opportunity to meet in only positive ways. His positive outlook, fun personality and contagious smile made him one of the most likable people ever. Amir’s bright smile, and his ability to make anyone laugh effortlessly made him extremely approachable to anyone. He spread his kindness onto me and so many others, helping us feel extremely important whenever talking with him. He found the best things out of the worst scenarios, and selflessly made sure others around him were all happy and smiling around him regardless of the worst of times. I’ll miss the kindness and the large smile he had, but he’ll be remembered in my heart, and many others forever. Love you forever, Amir.” —Aidan Arnold (10)
“I remember there was this one basketball game where he came in late in the fourth quarter and scored a layup, and then everyone in the stands went crazy because they were so happy to see him be successful, which just showed how positive of an impact he had.
Amir’s smile and laugh was something that I’ll never forget and something that I’ll cherish for as long as I can. He was such a bright light in anyone’s life no matter the circumstances, which is what made him such a great person and that’s how his legacy should be defined. We all miss and love you, Amir. Thank you so much for everything.” —Suveer Sood (11)
“From knowing Amir since kindergarten, he was the most positive and optimistic kid I have ever met. No matter when I saw him, he always put a smile on my face and made my day better. He was a beacon of light that lit up a room every single day. One of the most respectful, caring and honest friends anyone could ever have, who truly reflected the ideals of a T-wolf. When looking at the three values, compassion, mutual respect and integrity, Amir checked all of them and made so many people’s lives better. I had the pleasure of playing basketball with him in eighth grade and freshman year. I remember going to the park with him on weekends over the summer, getting shots up and watching his club games. It made me really proud to see his growth because I knew how much effort he put in and the time he dedicated to it. Whether he was in the game or not, he was always energetic and supportive of his teammates. He challenged me to be a better player and a better person, and for that I can’t thank him enough.” —Aditya Sheth (11)
“Amir was the most positive light in my life, and one thing I remember about him is he would always go the extra mile, whether that was running the extra lap in elementary school for fun or going out of his way to help people. He was always just positive and uplifting no matter what. He was such a big influence on those he was around and his contributions to this community will never ever be forgotten.” —MJ Dela Cruz (11)
“During one of my last visits, a time in which we both knew his time was drawing near, Amir did not say anything for an hour, using hand signals to communicate. When he finally spoke, he did not complain from any pain, nor did he make any comments about his worsening situation. Even when faced with the end of his life, when he had every right to worry about him and himself alone, when he deserved to be selfish and care for nobody else, the first thing Amir said was ‘Amine, your birthday is coming up, right?’ I was stunned at the sheer selflessness of that little comment about my birthday, a day that felt insignificant relative to his battle with cancer. Even now, I am amazed, touched, and grateful that during his last days he thought of me.
From his diagnosis to his passing, Amir taught me that even when dealing with unimaginable hardship, we all possess the ability to lift others, to keep a smile on our faces and spread it to the people around us. This is how Amir fought cancer. To those of you who knew him, I ask you to remember him not as the boy who fell to cancer, but as the man who conquered unbelievable odds.” —Amine Adlouni, Class of 2021