Sean H.Y. Wu, 18, of Cedar Rapids, passed away Saturday, April 8, 2017, at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics. Visitation will be from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday, April 21, at Cedar Memorial Park Funeral Home, 4200 First Ave. NE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52402.
A Celebration of Life will be at 2 p.m. Saturday, April 22, at the Iowa Memorial Union (North and South rooms), 125 N. Madison St., Iowa City. Private family inurnment: Cedar Memorial Park Mausoleum.
Sean Hsiang Yang Wu was born Aug. 12, 1998, to Dr. David Wu and Una Yang in Phoenix, Ariz. He was diagnosed with Kawasaki disease at the age of 6, but never let the disease slow him down. Through the Make-a-Wish Foundation, he was able to meet President George W. Bush because he was obsessed with the United States presidency. He could name every president and first lady in order and knew all the fun facts.
Sean graduated as valedictorian from J.F. Kennedy High School in Cedar Rapids in 2016. Some of his other achievements during his high school career included the following: class secretary for four years, National Honor Society, National Science Honor Society, AP Scholar, and National History Day-National Competition Documentary for two years. One of his (along with his collaborators) National History Day documentaries, "A Brain Full of Grain" on Dr. Norman Borlaug, is shown at his website: www.normanborlaug.org.
He worked at Mathnasium as an instructor that provided tutoring to students ranging from elementary to high school age. He enjoyed playing piano and violin with the school orchestra. He volunteered at UnityPoint Health for three years as a weekend receptionist. He also achieved Eagle Scout rank with the Boy Scouts of America.
He was enrolled in the University of Iowa Honors Program as a freshman majoring in English and pre-business (business analytics and marketing). He was a Black and Gold Scholar and was on the Dean's List. Sean was vice president of the Associated Daum Residence Hall. Sean also was active in university organizations, including the Bijou Film board with a weekly podcast, and being a DJ at KRUI Radio.
Sean was warm and humorous with a knack for funny (and not so funny) puns and jokes. He will be remembered for his love of the cinematic arts, modern alternative music and making and keeping people happy.
As quoted in the Iowa City Press-Citizen, "Anyone who had contact with and got to know Sean will be affected by his death," said Art Spisak, director of the UI Honors Program. "He was a warm and engaging personality, very intelligent and multi-talented. But he also was modest and very eager to interact with people. He was not at all standoffish. You just got to know him naturally."
He is survived by his loving parents, Dr. David Wu and Una Yang; his twin brother, Austin; paternal grandmother, Dr. Chiu Hui Wu; and maternal grandmother, Mrs. Un Suk Yang.
Memorial donations may be directed to the American Heart Association in Sean Wu's memory or the Sean Wu Memorial Scholarship at Cedar Rapids Community Schools Foundation.
Online condolences, stories, and best wishes may be directed to the family at www.cedarmemorial.com under Obituaries.