Artist, heart, talented, kind, soulful
For Mitchell, life was meant to be lived—unapologetically, extravagantly, and joyfully. Nothing was too small to be a cause for celebration. Even a simple weeknight meal could be an event. He wouldn’t just throw together Italian food with pasta sauce from a jar; there would be music, decorations, and authentic recipes researched and cooked with care. He even made pizzas at Whole Foods for two years. Every moment of every day was meant to be lived to the fullest.
Mitchell’s love for creation was not restricted to the kitchen but blossomed into every crevice of his life. He was an artist. Whether it was painting, drawing, or editing videos, Mitchell excelled in nearly every artistic endeavor he attempted. He wanted to share art and the joy of creating with everyone around him.
“Mitchell was extremely passionate about teaching, performing, and growing in his craft,” his mother, Cari, said. “He tried out new colors, types of paint or pencil or crayon, anything he could get his hands on. He was wonderful at creating jewelry as well.”
He became an educator but dreamed of one day owning a loft where he could create his art to sell it for a living.
Mitchell’s love for his friends and family was like his love for art—boundless. When Cari was in California, he sent her videos of himself cooking, edited to look like he was a contestant on Top Chef. The friends he made when he was a child—Anton, Aaron, and Ben—were the same friends that grew with him into adulthood. At a Wall Street protest, he met a lovely young woman named Cara, who he fell in love with and dated for three years. They lived together in Asheville, North Carolina.
“Mitchell would have given you the tooth out of his mouth if he knew it would help you,” Cari said.
Mitchell could never be tied down to one place. Though he loved the mountains of Colorado, he traveled across the country to attend the Chicago Institute of Art, and then across the ocean to Paris. There, he spent some time planting hundreds of trees in schools and fell in love with the city. He longed to go back but never had the chance.
Mitchell struggled with substance use disorder (SUD) for two years. In that time, he became someone different from the Mitchell his loved ones remembered. Cari believes he might have developed schizophrenia. He became angry and distant. He lost his home. Beneath his ﬂuctuating moods, however, he was still the loving person who thought of others before himself.
Cari will soon have maintained ﬁve years of recovery from alcohol. Mitchell’s passing spurred her on her own journey, and his memory sustains her. She does her best to show support to others living with SUD and share any resources that she can ﬁnd with them. Mitchell taught her how to be grateful, and his radiant spirit still guides her through her hardest days. She will always remember him saying, “Ma! What are ﬁve things you are grateful for? Just ﬁve little things.”
Mitchell’s mother, Cari Hundt, provided the information for this narrative.
September 30, 1991-July 24, 2018–Age 26
Portrait Artist: Shawn Faust
Narrative Writer: Angela Day