Lining the sidewalk outside a Planned Parenthood facility in Ventura one Saturday in early September were some 180 Thomas Aquinas College students who prayed for — and with — their departed friend, Andrew “Kent” Moore (’14). The gathering served to pay tribute to Kent as well as to continue his work. A tireless advocate of unborn children and their mothers, Kent spent countless hours outside this clinic and others, praying for an end to abortion. This summer, while participating in a Crossroads pro-life walk across America, he was struck and killed by an oncoming vehicle in Indiana. His classmates were not only shocked and devastated by the news, they were also determined — determined to honor Kent in the way that they knew he would want to be honored: by serving Christ in the unborn. “This prayer vigil happened because everyone knew that we needed to do it for Kent’s sake,” said Rebecca Bessette (’14).Kent — as he asked his friends at the college to call him (because there were too many other Andrews in his class) — was a dedicated but reluctant activist. “I can safely say he pretty much hated praying in front of the local abortion mill,” recalled his father, Joseph Moore. “What Andrew did love was the Truth.… His love of Truth led him to a love of God, to a love of neighbor, to Thomas Aquinas College — and to untold lonely hours spent in front of Planned Parenthood. And to the walk that resulted in his being taken from us.”Dominican Father Paul Raftery, a chaplain at the college during Kent’s two years on campus, remembers his zeal for not only knowing the truth, but for living it. “Kent took great pains to avoid even the slightest bit of discrepancy between his conscience and his behavior,” said Father Raftery. “His devotion and work for life were not for show, but because he realized he would never be at peace until he carried through on what he knew to be true.”“Kent gave his life in service of God and in defense of the unborn,” added Michael F. McLean, Thomas Aquinas College president. “We miss him greatly; yet we are also inspired by and grateful for his witness.”Early on Saturday morning after the first week of classes, Kent’s friends arose to decorate the cars — some 35 in all — that would form a makeshift caravan to take more than half of the Thomas Aquinas College student body to neighboring Ventura. They painted messages in his memory and in support of the pro-life cause on the windows. After morning Mass they met up in St. Joseph Commons and made the half-hour drive, joined by members of the faculty and their families as well as the College’s three chaplains.There were no protests, no conflicts, and no angry words. A few passing drivers honked their horns in support. An elderly woman who was walking by joined in the prayers. A young couple that had approached the clinic gratefully accepted a brochure for a local pro-life pregnancy center. The event was quiet, peaceful and prayerful — just like Kent.“It was good to get us together and do something in memory of Kent, to make it hit home,” reflected Sarah Dufresne (’14). “He’s really gone, and he really died while he was walking across the country praying for all the unborn babies.“I oftentimes think of John Paul II’s words addressing the youth, ‘Do not be afraid to go out in the streets.’ I think that there was a definite, holy boldness that we had as a college on Saturday, and I hope that continues.”A month later, members of the Thomas Aquinas College community joined Kent’s parents and siblings for a memorial Mass in Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity Chapel. “Kent walked in the way of the saints,” said Jesuit Father Cornelius M. Buckley, college chaplain who served as the principal celebrant and homilist.Speaking fondly of the young man’s kindness, his innocence, and his love, Father Buckley urged those in attendance to emulate his pursuit of personal holiness, particularly his compassion for the victims of abortion. “I’m sure that what we can do now for Kent,” he said, “is to become committed in the same way to the right-to-life movement that he was.”This article first appeared in the Fall Newsletter of Thomas Aquinas College.{gallery width=100 height=100}gallery/2012/1214/sbaquinas/{/gallery}