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Luke Lakshman Gould, beloved husband, son, brother, grandson and friend, left this earth peacefully on Wednesday afternoon, September 5th, 2019. Luke passed away gently in his sleep holding his wife’s hand as the sun shone through their bedroom windows.
Luke was a vibrant, loving, and gentle person. His contagious joy, laughter and zest for living life truly touched everyone around him. He loved deeply and was never afraid to tell people how much he loved them. As an adult, his beautiful, long, brown hair and fluffy, friendly beard made him recognizable from a mile away. He grew his beard long to honor the memory of and feel closer to his beloved maternal grandfather, Gopal Pai.
Luke, “Lukie”, was born in Boston, Massachusetts. Within a few short years, his family moved to Cleveland Heights, Ohio where he lived for most of his life. Luke’s childhood home was within walking distance from his schools and close friends. As a boy, he was a talented pianist, Boy Scout, tennis player, and a drummer in his high school marching band. Luke attended college at Case Western University, graduating in 2014 with a degree in electrical engineering. As a college student, he was a brother in the Beta Theta Pi Fraternity, pianist in the college’s jazz ensemble, enjoyed playing frisbee, played in Stations, a band with his best friends, and was a DJ on the school’s radio station WRUW. He always excelled at academics and pushed himself to succeed, insisting he was “this close” to being valedictorian of his high school class and claiming that his only bad grade he ever received was in the graduate level philosophy class he insisted on taking in college (even after the professor tried to dissuade him).
Upon graduating from college, Luke was invited to participate in a competitive leadership development program at Rockwell Instruments in Cleveland. However, with his sense of adventure stirring, Luke deferred the program for 6 months and had an incredible adventure biking solo through Canada and the northeastern United States. Upon completing the leadership program in 2016, Rockwell offered Luke a job developing and engineering a mobile platform. His co-workers praised his commitment to improving his workplace. He worked on a green initiative advocating to replace disposable lunch containers with compostable ones and started a bi-weekly reading group asking co-workers to engage in conversations about racial justice and race relations in our everyday lives.
Luke was committed to social justice, racial equity, and community building. He found the most joy playing music with his friends, growing beautiful plants and delicious vegetables, taking long rambling walks with friends, snuggling with his wife and their dog Lawrence, learning new things by reading and listening to podcasts, riding his bike, cooking with his loved ones, and sharing delicious meals.
On October 13th, 2018, Luke was married to his best friend Taylor “Floy” Ann Hoffman. They were married in Cleveland in a deeply personal ceremony that celebrated community, Luke’s Indian heritage, and the couple’s unique brand of honest, tender love. In December 2018, Luke and Taylor quit their jobs to travel the world together. He wanted to make traveling, cooking, and community part of their life together. In April, Luke and Taylor moved to her hometown, New Orleans, where they bought their first home together. He was so excited about starting a family and tackling every new adventure that was to come with his partner.
Luke is survived by his devoted wife Taylor Ann Hoffman, his parents Kyle Andrew Gould and Meetha Pai Gould, his siblings Ian Gopal Gould and Lilavathi Marie Gould, his maternal grandmother Shanthi Gopal Pai, his paternal grandfather Frank Dunlap Gould, and dozens of loving uncles, aunts, cousins, nieces and nephews.
Luke will be forever remembered by family and friends as a generous and gentle man, who cared deeply about taking care of those around him, enjoying life to its fullest, and sharing his love with everyone. He left this world too soon, but he will live on forever in our hearts. His memory will continue to enrich the lives of those who love him; in great meals shared, songs heard, gardens grown, and kindness exchanged between friends and strangers. The world was a better place for having him in it. Donations can be made on Luke’s behalf to The American Brain Tumor Association, www.hope.abta.org ,Planned Parenthood, 1110 Vermont Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20005; and the 350.org campaign to support the New Green Deal https://act.350.org/donate/green-new-deal-donate .
The memorial service will be held on Friday, September 13th from 3 to 4 p.m. at the Cleveland Botanical Garden, 11030 East Blvd., Cleveland, OH 44106. FRIENDS MAY CALL AT BROWN-FORWARD, 17022 CHAGRIN BLVD., SHAKER HTS., OH 44120, THURSDAY SEPTEMBER 12TH FROM 6-8 PM.