From Sub Pop Records:
Last Thursday evening, October 21st, driving his young daughter Anna home after picking her up from daycare, our co-worker Andy Kotowicz was involved in a terrible car accident that, so incredibly sadly, proved fatal. In what qualifies as nothing short of miraculous and definitively heroic, his daughter was pulled from the remains of the car, while it was on fire, by a local business owner who witnessed the accident. Though this same person tried and was unable to rescue Andy, I can think of no greater favor to our friend than saving his daughter’s life. And, in some small measure of thanks, we will all be eating as many Rizzo’s French Dip sandwiches as we can hold for a very long time. “Thank you” seems ridiculously inadequate, but thank you. Thank you.
Andy was under care at Harborview Medical Center in a coma until Saturday evening when he was taken off life support in the company of his immediate family. He was an organ donor and a recipient for his kidneys was found very soon after his passing. This is a small indication of the kind of guy he was.
Anna suffered some bruises and a broken arm, but is now home with her mother and family and is, we are told, recovering and adapting. There is a lesson here about the resilience and redemptive powers of children that we can all hope to learn from.
And so, those are the facts as we know them regarding the accident.
The facts as I know them regarding my friend, our friend, I am, I’m sorry to admit, unable to fully present right now. It’s too, too much. He was smart and funny and enthused; passionate in his love of music and his family; a patient and steadfast friend. He worked here at Sub Pop for the past ten and a half years and his contributions here, to the bands and artists we work with, and to us are innumerable and though I will be forced to do so, we all will, I cannot imagine any of it without him. I admired him, respected him, turned to him when I needed help and he never failed me. I know the rest of his family here feel the same. He was universally loved and it was all of our great good fortune to find ourselves in his company.
There will be more to say and write about this later, but right now, our friend has died and we are simply and utterly heartbroken.
This news hits us heavily here at WFMU as Sub Pop and Andy have always been extremely vocal in their dedication to listening to us at their Seattle offices, and while I personally never met him and only corresponded some on email over the years with him, I recognized his spirit as being one of a real music lover. It was crystal clear when he'd drop a line jazzed about whatever he heard on the station, and indeed artists like Pissed Jeans, Comets on Fire, Kelley Stoltz, and Jennifer Gentle who were beloved in our spheres here were also beloved staples of Sub Pop's which brought us closer together in many ways, radio/label relations/support aside. If anything over the last decade since our internet presence expanded, WFMU began to recognize new friends in every corner of the USA and world, and pretty much everyone from Sub Pop's roster and offices passing through our studios reported the extensive cheerleading on Andy's behalf to which we're super touched and grateful. An Andy Kotowicz Family Foundation site even kindly cites WFMU as a source for donations in his memory. We in turn hope you can offer support in his memory to his family's direction. We're sorry we never met him, and our hearts and thoughts go out to every one of his friends, co-workers and family members. Sub Pop will soon be getting together a silent auction as well, of which we will be a part. Stay tuned to their site for further details. UPDATE: On December 4, several Sub Pop bands will play a benefit for the Andy Kotowicz Family Foundation, which raises money for Kotowicz's family, at the Showbox at the Market in Seattle. The bill includes Mudhoney, Shabazz Palaces, Wolf Eyes, Vetiver, Pissed Jeans, Fruit Bats, A-Frames/AFCGT, and Michael Yonkers.