About 300 USD students, faculty and staff attended a memorial service for Anthony Sanfratello in Aalfs Auditorium Tuesday evening. Also in attendance were about 50 of his fraternity brothers.
Sanfratello, a 19-year-old sophomore kinesiology sports major and a member of the Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity died in a car accident returning from break on Friday.
The service was hosted by TKE and was filled with TKE members talking about their brother and friend’s love for life, his kindness to others and his love for animals.
Rhett Struve, the president of TKE, said Sanfratello wasn’t a very emotional person, but he still made sure to show his friends how much he cared for them.
“He had that sense of humor that we all do and he was a good friend to everyone, he really was. He truly cared about USD and our house,” Struve said. “I think we meant the world to him and he wasn’t much for emotions, but he really let everyone know how much he loved all of us.”
Struve said about 30 members of TKE will be making the eight hour drive to Sanfratello’s home in Chicago on Wednesday to offer their condolences to his family and to attend the funeral service. In the meantime a GoFundMe account has been set up by the fraternity to raise money to donate to Sanfratello’s family to help pay for his memorial services.
As of Wednesday morning $3,900 of a $3,000 goal has been raised.
“We wanted to be able to help his family cover his funeral costs because that should be the last thing they’re worrying about at this time,” Struve said. “We figured we would get enough support from the Greek community, but I don’t think that any of us saw it getting as high as it did and it really shows how much people cared about him.”
A makeshift memorial has also been established between Patterson Hall and the Muenster University Center where students can place flowers next to a photo of Sanfratello.
Robert Peterson, a member of TKE and a friend of Sanfratello, said he first met the man at the freshman bonfire and block party last year.
“You would never expect that he was from Chicago because he kind of gave off that small town vibe that you see in South Dakota,” Peterson said. “He was a down to earth person and even though he didn’t show it sometimes, he really cared.”
Both Struve and Peterson said Sanfratello loved animals, especially dogs, and in his honor the fraternity plans on volunteering at an animal shelter later this semester.
“I don’t think that he really realized the impact that he made on everyone’s life here at USD and the members of TKE. I can’t say enough nice things about him,” Peterson said.