Remembering Christopher Coppola, March 20, 1989 – November 13, 2009

posted by Becky Ran

The following is a tribute to Chris Coppola. Donations to Rainforest Action Network in Chris’ memory have to-date exceeded $5,000. The Coppola family plans to continue to actively support the mission of RAN in helping to keep Chris’ spirit alive. The Board of Directors and the staff of RAN is honored that the Coppola family have chosen our organization as a tribute to Chris and as a way to ensure that the ongoing memory of his goodness continues to make a positive difference in this world.

After Chris Coppola passed away in November, his family sought a charity which embraced an active mission that is consistent with the values and attributes that Chris demonstrated throughout his life.


His family started by looking into charities that the band, Metallica, has supported. Chris was a long time, passionate and enthusiastic fan of Metallica. For the first and only time Chris had experienced a live performance of Metallica on October 30 2009 at Madison Square Garden in New York at the 25th Annual Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Benefit Concert just two weeks prior to his passing. His parents, Joyce and Dominick, went with him to the concert. All had a wonderful evening as Chris was absolutely thrilled by the entire event and Metallica, in particular.

His family ultimately selected Rainforest Action Network, which has notably also been supported by Metallica, because of its mission and the manner in which RAN carries out its humanistic activities. By all accounts, with an infectious smile and great sense of humor, Chris as a child and as a young man was always compassionate, thoughtful, kind and good-hearted. Chris was fascinated by and enjoyed kind interaction with nature. He was loyal to his friends, family and his principles of fairness. Once they confirmed that the ideals and values of Chris are reflected in the works of RAN, the Coppola family selected Rainforest Action Network as a fitting memorial and legacy to Chris.

Many of Chris’ family and friends conveyed wonderful stories about how he would go out of his way in his always helpful and supportive way.

Along with his donation, one long-time friend wrote:

I watched him grow into a fine young man with pride. He possessed a heart of gold and was wise beyond his years. Chris was someone anyone could love. He was funny, kind-hearted, reflective and considerate. As a camp counselor, he often befriended children who were shy or lonely and made them feel accepted. Kids knew they could be themselves around Chris and it was OK. I still think of his smile and the laughter he brought to all of us.

Another close friend recently wrote:

Chris always was, always will be everyone’s best friend. Love u n miss u.

Joyce and Dominick expressed their sentiments when they wrote:

Our tribute is in memory and honor of our son, Chris, and for all the happiness, laughter, and kindness he brought to his entire family, friends and everyone whoever had the opportunity to meet him as a boy and as a young man. We will always love him. Chris is and will always be very special. He truly made the world a better place.

Chris with his niece and godchild, Olivia
Chris (far right) with Tara (sister) and Chuck (brother-in-law)
Left to Right: Dominick (dad), Chris, Tara (sister), Joyce (mom), Danielle (sister), Chuck (Chris' brother-in-law)

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