Tribute for Christopher Colin Applegate (Guest book)
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Welcome to the memorial page for

Christopher Colin Applegate

November 19, 1986 ~ April 21, 2017 (age 30) 30 Years Old
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A candle was lit by Adriel O'Malley on January 5, 2023 6:50 PM
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A candle was lit by shilpi on March 16, 2021 2:17 AM
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A candle was lit by Kpl on January 11, 2020 3:39 PM
Message from Genie Applegate
May 21, 2018 1:33 PM

Announcement of
The Christopher Colin Applegate Memorial IT Fund

The Family of Colin Applegate, in partnership with the Arlington Community Foundation, is pleased to announce the Christopher Colin Applegate Memorial IT Fund. The purpose of this fund is to support promising IT students in Arlington County in ways not covered by the resources typically available. Genie, his Mother, had discussed this idea with Colin at one time, and he really liked it.

Many of you know that Colin was a passionate and accomplished IT professional. His words were “I am a computer nerd, and proud of it!” Largely self-taught, he started his own computer repair business at age 9, and progressed to earn the Arlington Chamber of Commerce “Young Technology Mind of the Year” award in Fall 2004. With a talented team of 2 other Yorktown students, he participated in the INTEL International Science and Engineering Fair in May, 2005, and garnered a second place award from the US Air Force for their project "The Effect of Network Interruption on the Effectiveness of Bundling vs. TCP/IP Data Transmission Protocols". Colin went on to earn at least 5 professional certificates, specializing in cyber security, network administration and Linux open-source code. His other interests included neurology, pharmacology, comparative religions, travel, gaming, blogging, music, golf and tennis.

We remember Colin as loving, generous and kind with a whimsical sense of humor. Even deep into his illness, Colin loved helping others of all ages in learning computer skills and repair, applying on-line for jobs, and crafting resumes. In his own words, from a journal entry in June 2006, “I feel all my hopes and dreams are within reach….Why do I want to do it? Because I love people and the Earth. I want to help!” By developing the first working prototype of the Edubuntu educational software and other efforts, Colin contributed to solving global problems.

If you wish to remember Colin and continue the good he wanted to do by donating to his Fund, instructions are below. Thank you for your consideration.

- Checks may be made payable to the Arlington Community Foundation (on memo line, write “In memory of Colin Applegate” or “Applegate Fund”) and send to:
Arlington Community Foundation
818 N. Quincy St., Suite 103
Arlington, VA 22203
- Credit card or PayPal contributions may made online at and specifying “In memory of Colin Applegate” or “Applegate Fund”; or by calling the Foundation at 703-243-4785.
- A gift of appreciated stock may be made. Please call the Foundation at 703-243-4785 for more information.

Message from Blake
October 2, 2017 5:11 PM

Collin, you were like a Brother to me. I'll always remember you as the kind, caring, intelligent, and generous man that you were. Even though you were going through things, you always were there for me. You will never be forgotten. Thank you for everything my Brother.
Message from Blake
January 7, 2018 5:43 PM

Thank you Blake for your kind and heartfelt remembrance.
You knew Colin for the loving, kind and generous person he is.
Message from Genie Applegate
July 12, 2017 6:11 PM

Dearest Colin--
Your brother Austen observed how brave you were to get up every morning to face the day, not knowing what it would bring. This observation is so true.
I draw comfort, strength and inspiration from your courage.
I miss you terribly and will love you forever. Mom 7-12-17
Message from Eugenie Mallinson Applegate (mother of Colin)
May 17, 2017 3:34 PM

Remembering Colin
Eugenie M. Applegate, Colin’s Mother. May 1, 2017

Thank you every one for coming today. The outpouring of love and support from my family, this St. Peter’s community and friends has been truly amazing and has sustained us through this excruciating sadness. So many people loved Colin and kept him in their prayers, and for this we are profoundly grateful. After this celebration, please join us back at our house for refreshments.
We want to remember Colin for his many and complex qualities. He was loving, kind, gentle, scientific, connected to Nature, sociable, sensitive, intellectually curious, articulate, bright, talented, musical, funny and so much more (please forgive me; I am a Mom and could go on forever!). I will try to speak to these qualities. Throughout his lifetime, Colin brought us great joy. Most of all, I want to remember that we had a loving and meaningful life together.
Colin arrived on Earth as calm and easy. We soon settled into a pleasant routine of eating, singing, reading, playing and just goofing around. My younger sister, upon meeting him as a 3 month old infant travelling by a grueling airflight, remarked “What a mellow baby!” His early nicknames were Peach and Colliwog. As an infant, Colin did not sleep during the day. Rather he sat in his places, observing. My Mother used to remark that Colin was born a wise, old soul who just took things in.
Colin began to articulate words purposely at 14 months, not particularly precocious. His first words were not Mamma, or Dada, but, as a noise thundered overhead, he said “airplane”. Moments later another outside sound produced “car”. After I settled my excitement, I thought “Oh boy, are we in trouble: the next word will be “car keys”! He seldom stopped the flow of conversation after that.
His scientific side showed early. Before he was 2, he was obsessed with the space shuttle. One day in the Blue Room for older toddlers at preschool, the teacher was talking about counting. Colin volunteered that he knew how to count: “ten, nine, eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one, liftoff!” His next obsession was vacuum cleaners. My mother’s friends donated to the cause, and we soon had a basement full of non-working vacuum cleaners that he played with. Again at preschool, at lunch one day he could not get his favorite lunch spot and he burst into tears. His caring and practiced teacher, asked what the matter was. He blurted out that he could not see the classroom vacuum cleaner. By quick thinking, as I recall, she moved the vacuum cleaner to where he could see it, and crisis resolved. Sometime later I found him sitting under the dining room table taking scissors to his much loved book Where’s Waldo?. He was cutting out a tiny picture of a vacuum cleaner so he could have it with him always. Next came keys, for reasons unknown. His granddaddy Apple made the rounds of hardware and other stores looking for rejects. When Apple produced copies of Jaguar keys, Colin was THRILLED! [He wore so many keys attached to his trousers that he could barely keep them up—long before that became a fashion statement!] Continuing into middle school, Colin expressed some interest in horticulture, which of course delighted me. When he asked if he could grow some things under lights in a controlled experiment testing the effect of varying levels of light and darkness, this Mom dutifully took him to Dominion Electric and set him up with lights, fixtures, ballasts, wiring and the requested spinach seeds. Then I awaited the results. About a month later, upstairs I smelled a horrible smell coming from his room. Upon closer inspection, I found the light installation too close to a plastic, now-smoldering, dry cleaner bag. It seems that Colin nearly burned the house down growing….ahem, unapproved plant material!
His interest in computers developed around age 3. He would go the office with Dad and plug away. Dad will add more to this later. But Colin was definitely a computer nerd, and proud of it. For the dreaded school book reports, Colin choose to do his reports on computer manuals. That must have been fun reading for his teacher. After suffering through a few of these, the teacher suggested he might want to consider another genre.
Colin was musical. As we first drove him home from the hospital to our house on Jackson St., Beethovan’s “Ode to Joy” was playing on the car radio. How perfect. I rocked him to sleep singing, and we sang silly songs together. He sang in school choruses, learned the violin and banged around on the piano, mostly the endless theme of Mission Impossible with a school buddy. He listened to various genres all his life. I was quite struck by how much he enjoyed participating in the St. Peter’s production of Joseph and His Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. In his last year, he wanted to learn to play the guitar, and was interested in synthesizing “techno” music—I think I have that right.
Colin had a quirky but well-developed sense of humor. The tiny voice coming from the carseat behind me would talk about “Sersats”. He could not or would not enlighten me about Sersats. It was years later in middle school that he confessed that was his pet name for me. When he was 4, we were visiting his Uncle Jeff, who has a number of very accomplished friends. One asked Colin at dinner one night what was the name of the knitted mouse in the pocket of his sweater. Colin’s instant answer: Freako! Roaring with laughter, this Madison Avenue heavyweight thought this reply was about one of the funniest things he had ever heard. When Colin was about 6, we heard endless renditions of Jim Carey’s “ALL- righty then”, and “Say hello to my stinky little friend.” He would follow up with Robin Williams line as the genie in Alladin “May I take your order please?!” Colin understood what powerful tools humor and satire are, and kept his sense of humor throughout his life, regularly making us laugh in the car and at the dining room table.
Of course, Colin had a bit of mischief in him. As I was struggling in my first trimester of pregnancy with Austen, and needed to lay down on a sultry August afternoon, I set Colin up in his spot at the kitchen counter with a snack of yogurt and his favorite TV shows Thomas the Tank Engine and Inspector Gadget. I instructed him to stay at his spot until he finished his snack. The next thing I heard was the scritch scratch of the kitchen stool moving, and paper towels being ripped from their holder. I opened one eye and asked Colin what he was doing. “Oh nothing” was the reply. Instinct told me to investigate. It seems that Colin and the yogurt had left the kitchen for the dining room with its floor fan. The yogurt now lay in a thin film of about 10 foot square all over the cracks and aged planks of the dining room floor. Was this an accident, or another controlled experiment, one involving the physics of moving air meeting semi liquids? [Another time, on a dare in 5th grade, he hacked into the staff computer system and, it seems, muddled with a few grades. * This previous sentence was not spoken in my remembrances at Colin’s service. As I was reading, a voice said “No, no—don’t say this!” Turns out Colin’s 4th and 5th grade teachers were in the audience! Was the voice Colin’s?]
Colin could be a bit untidy. His room always was littered with computer parts and manuals, piles of clothes, textbooks on pharmacology and medicine, soda cans and so forth. The family rule became “Nothing grows in your room except YOU!” No vermin, bugs, mold or, of course, unapproved plant material. His car became a repository of the same, and more: cigarette butts, unfinished food etc. An English cousin fondly recalls that Colin always made him laugh, whether at the dining room table or driving around in his car filled with milk cartons. Another family saying became “Showers are good!” His mind was buzzing with so many other things, we just accepted the jumble as part of who he was. We gave him his space, and closed the door.
Colin was a very giving person. In 3rd grade he volunteered to help the less technically inclined teachers. They soon began to trust and depend on him. He loved it because it got him out of art class. He continued to help in the computer labs through his time at Yorktown High School. He loved small children and enjoyed playing with, reading to and mentoring them on the computer. Colin was also kind and tender hearted. As a teenager, he often would include Austen in his computer games and local area network parties. After a rain, he would pick up earthworms off the sidewalk and gently move them to the garden so that they did not come to a nasty end.
Colin was SO loving. As I looked through photographs, I was especially struck—and comforted—by the uninhibited affection he showed us and his little brother, Austen. He wrote sweet notes to me and the family. He was interested in, engaged with and completely accepted others. We know he loved us and others because he told us so. Even as he struggled with his terrible illness, he far expanded our capacities for empathy, compassion, caring and love. That is a good thing.
There were just so many moving parts to Colin. We cherish each and every one of them. We will love him forever, and miss him profoundly. Again, we lived a loving and meaningful life together. And that is the ultimate thing.
Rest in Peace dear Colin.

EMA 4-30-17

Message from Chris Applegate (Dad)
May 10, 2017 4:42 PM

Christopher Colin Applegate’s Memorial Service May 1, 2017
Remembrance by Christopher Applegate, Colin’s father.
Colin was the ultimate Tech Guy:
• Colin started at 3 years old when he wrote his first DOS commands (No MS Windows in 1989)
• He built an entire desktop system by 8 years old
• He was IT Consulting by age 9 years old
• He had charge of Yorktown HS’s and Guilford College’s computer systems
• He Won the YHS Science Fair 2005
• He Won Placement in State Science Fair 2005
• He Won an Award at International Science Fair from the US Air Force for Intergalactic Communications. 2005
• He was Arlington TECH Person of the Year 2005
• Colin was invited to the World’s Stage by Canonical Ltd. to help forge transformational change. He travelled to Sydney, Australia and London, England to help modify Canonical’s UBUNTU operating system to EDUBUNTU which was to become a Free Education Open System for Kids of the World of all ages. April 2005
• Colin earned four COMPTIA Lifetime Certifications. Such certifications typically require 6 to 8 years of school and experience. Colin did the four Certifications in one year and was self-taught.
• Colin’s Systems became Beta test sites for Microsoft, Symantec, and UCLA 2005-2010
• Colin also developed a relationship with Vent Cerf (widely accepted as the inventor of the Internet). They discussed Internet issues over a number of years. *
• As an adult, if Colin sought IT work, he was instantly hired. Colin had some great but short-lived IT gigs. He was a Tech officer for the Marines, a Medical office tech officer, an NIH Contractor, a Business customer service tech at 3 firms, and the Chief Technology Officer for a financial firm. Unfortunately, as his condition worsened and so did his opportunities and his motivations.
• Doubting Thomas story 1996: A U.S. Navy Admiral was having chronic difficulties with his desktop. He had professions from the IT profession and Navy IT Techs who could not resolve his problem. The Admiral’s daughter knew Colin and told her Dad to call him. He initially refused because Colin was a Kid and his Consulting Rate was that of an adult. The Admiral was making his household miserable about his Desktop. The Admiral’s wife finally said, call Colin or else. The Admiral did call Colin. After 20 minutes at the Admiral’s home, Colin solved the problem.
• Doubting Thomas story 1998: A church parishioner who worked at the Pentagon said he was having problems with his system at the Pentagon that no one seemed able to resolve. Colin was able to get into the system and prove there was a flaw. The parishioner thought it unlikely that Colin could assess the problem. Colin said let me show you the flaw—Colin disabled the system and screens went BLACK! The parishioner then believed Colin and begged that he return his system access. Colin did so and explained how to correct the flaw. The flaw was corrected by the Pentagon IT staff and the parishioner was a Hero!
• At age 10 (1996), Colin wanted to call Microsoft to discuss system flaws of a new release. He thought that MS would not speak with him because he was a kid. Dad told him to call and not to worry because his knowledge base would exceed most adults. Colin did call and talked with a Tech Team that appreciated his concerns. They asked him how old he was and he told them. The MS Team said they would like his phone number!
• Colin’s ability to hyperfocus was very well demonstrated heading for a Python System Conference; he backed-out of our driveway in our Tahoe and took the mailbox with him while being totally unaware of doing so.
• In the last Metro DC Blizzard, I was unable to return home from the Washington when I became stuck in the snow. Colin was consulting at the Egyptian Embassy at the same time. He was able to navigate the snow and unyielding traffic to find me and save me. Otherwise, I would have probably frozen to death.
As a dear friend said, Colin’s gifted mind was the core of his existence. Now, Colin’s mind is quiet and he is at Peace. Today we celebrate who he was and what he accomplished to help others. Colin’s wishes were that some of him be left to science. His wish was granted: NIH has some of him! Hopefully, Colin’s gift will help further mental health research and help others.

May 1, 2017
*Added May 3, 2017

Message from India
March 16, 2021 2:15 AM

Remembering colin,
Colin was the most talented It service provider. He knows how to create
IT consulting company unleash the benefits of data. He is the only top industry expert who possesses a deep understanding of information technology, IT Management, aligning analytics, and technology.

Message from Genie, Colin’s Mother
June 13, 2022 2:31 AM

I only recently found this posting.
Thank you for your kind condolences, even after all this time. It brings our family great comfort to know he was so respected in the IT community.
Message from Beryl & Debbie Deck
May 5, 2017 4:20 PM

Chris and Genie, though we have been separated by time and distance for many years the news of your son’s passing profoundly moved us. You both are in our thoughts at this time of sadness and grief and we fervently wish that you find some measure of peace when these mournful days fade finally into a new future.
Message from Sue Nelson
May 1, 2017 10:10 PM

I am so very sad to hear of this. Colin was a. Very special boy and a good friend to our son. My heart breaks for you. You were wonderful
Parents. Sometimes life is just too hard. Please keep in touch. I wish I had known about the
Service. Will be thinking about you both.

Message from Chris Applegate
May 3, 2017 5:07 PM

Sue, Thank you for your kind and heartfelt words. You were good to Colin. He liked your cookies and your cooking. We would love to see you.
God Bless, Chris and Genie
Message from Holland
May 1, 2017 2:18 PM

My Deepest Condolences go out to the family, I hope you find comfort in these words, "He will swallow up death forever,......And will wipe away the tears from all faces. Isaiah 25:8
Message from Holland
May 1, 2017 2:15 PM

My Deepest Condolences go out to the family, I hope you find comfort in these words, "He will swallow up death forever,......And will wipe away the tears from all faces. Isaiah 25:8
Message from Allie Obrand
May 1, 2017 2:10 PM

Chris, Genie, and Family: I am so saddened and sorry for your loss. It was a great childhood we had growing up in Maywood together, thinking of you guys during this difficult time.
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A candle was lit by Susie on April 30, 2017 6:24 PM
Message from Bob Knetl and Gail Baker
April 30, 2017 4:05 PM

Chris, Genie and Family,
We are so very sorry. We remember your joy when Colin was born, and we watched as he grew to be a sweet little boy with those flowing blond curls. How very sad we are for your loss. Our hearts go out to you all.
Bob and Gail
Message from Richard Amaya
April 28, 2017 3:44 AM

I offer my sincerest condolences to the family. Colin was a great person, I will never forget how nice of a person he was to me. He didn't go along with the flow. A brilliant and yet humble person. I first met Colin in 4th grade at Taylor Elementary. Then we went to Swanson middle school. To his family, I'm very sorry for your loss.
Message from Paul Flint
April 27, 2017 6:24 PM

March 5th 2003
Happier Times...
Expression of Sympathy

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A Sweet and Warm Remembrance�Table Arrangement was sent on April 27, 2017

With sympathy from a dear friend...

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A candle was lit by Pamela Bloxton on April 27, 2017 1:41 PM
Colin was always a good friend to me. I considered him a member of my family. I am so sorry he is gone. He was brilliant and I miss him.
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A candle was lit by Pamela Bloxton on April 27, 2017 1:41 PM
Colin was always a good friend to me. I considered him a member of my family. I am so sorry he is gone. He was brilliant and I miss him.
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A candle was lit by julie saccomandi and Giovanni on April 27, 2017 9:40 AM
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A candle was lit by Darcy Moore on April 26, 2017 8:01 PM
I'm so sorry for your loss. I know life will go on but it will be long and hard process. I'm truly sorry to hear about it through Brian. But I wish there is something I can do to help you through it all but just talking and grieving alone won't bring him back. Just memories and stories will keep him live in your heart and mind. I know I had to go thought it myself with my dad. Brian is a great man to talk too. He has helped me in many way then one. It is the most hardest thing you will have to do is losing a child that is so full of life. I know I never met him in person but I was looking forward to it. I hope you all the best and god bless your family and friends.
Message from Janel Scherrer
May 1, 2017 3:30 PM

As Darcy's mom, I also want to offer my sincerest condolences to Brian and family for the deeply sad loss of your brother, son, friend and more. Wishing you peace and healing.
Message from Bryant Templeton
April 26, 2017 4:03 PM

I'm so sad to hear about Colin. I remember him as a fellow student at Swanson Middle School. I couldn't believe how much he knew and how smart he was at such a young age. He introduced me to burning CDs before it was common for everyone. I know he was tormented by a horrible disease and wished I knew more about how to ease his suffering. I wish the best for his family and loved ones and hope you all find peace.

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A candle was lit by Mom and Dad on April 26, 2017 2:05 PM
Message from Carol Arnold
April 26, 2017 1:00 PM

Dear Genie and Chris, Kevin and I were deeply saddened to learn of your heartbreaking loss. We have many fond memories of Colin, and especially remember the years when your precious little boy was Shea's first playmate. Please know that our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. Carol
Message from Jim Rock
April 25, 2017 3:51 PM

Colin, you will be missed. As a boy and a young man, you were one of the most brilliant individuals who I have ever known. When I first met you I think you were in third grade at Taylor Elementary School. I was a member of the PTA. You helped us get the school's first web page up and running. I remember you installing some software on my computer, and needing to type in an incredibly long user key with numbers and letters. I saw you glance at it and start typing. I asked you if you needed me to read it to you, and you said "Mr. Rock, if I need you to I'll let you know." You then proceeded to finish typing in the complicated key code from memory without looking at it again, and gave me a nod and smile when it loaded correctly. I think you were nine at the time. I am glad to have been part of your life throughout the years. It is just so tragic that your brilliance was often crowded out by the troubles that also occupied your mind. I am glad I was able to be your friend, and thankful that at times I was able to offer you some mentorship. Your brain is now quiet, but I will always remember you for the gifted mind that was the core of your existence.
Message from Brian Applegate
April 26, 2017 8:01 PM

Thank you for your kind words it is appreciated
Message from Chris Applegate
April 25, 2017 11:46 PM

Jim, Your tribute to Colin is incredibly thoughtful. We appreciate your kindness.
Chris and Genie
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A candle was lit by April Hrossman on April 24, 2017 11:41 PM
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