People and Community University

Daniel ‘Danny’ Bishop remembered as a ‘true, bright light’

At a celebration of life ceremony, the University community mourned the passing of an impassioned student leader who uplifted others as he strove to excel.
Daniel Bishop vigil

A Celebration of Life and vigil was held Tuesday to honor Daniel "Danny" Bishop. Photos: Jenny Hudak/University of Miami

University of Miami faculty, classmates, family members, and friends gathered Tuesday on the Lakeside Patio to celebrate Daniel “Danny” Bishop, a beloved student leader whose passion and positivity inspired many on campus. 

Bishop, a 22-year-old senior majoring in mathematics and psychology, died in a traffic accident the morning of March 4 in Coral Gables while riding his scooter to the University. 

As part of the ceremony, which culminated with a candlelight vigil, faculty and classmates took turns sharing fond memories of Bishop. 

“Danny was a consummate advocate relentlessly pursuing what he believed in. His voice was respected and loved,” said Patricia Whitely, senior vice president for student affairs and alumni engagement. 

Whitely recognized Bishop’s parents, Jason and Susan, who were in attendance, for raising “an outstanding student leader who touched many of our lives and made us all better. 

“Danny truly embodied a ’Canes Care for ’Canes’ attitude,” Whitely added and noted that special Care for ’Canes bandannas had been produced for the ceremony in his honor. Bishop was often seen sporting a signature bandanna. 

A superior student, Bishop maintained a near-perfect GPA and earned a spot on the President’s Honor Roll almost every semester, according to the University. He also started his own math tutoring company and had secured a postgraduate job as a math teacher at local K-12 private school Gulliver Preparatory. 

“Students like Danny are the reason why we teach,” said Hillary Hoffman, a senior lecturer in the College of Arts and Sciences Department of Psychology. Bishop was a student in her discussion-focused statistics and research class. 

“Danny was my most engaged student. He had a lot of opinions and whether he was right or wrong, he had the courage of his convictions—and for the record, Danny, you were mostly right,” Hoffman said. “Danny had the brightest of futures, and his loss is a true tragedy.” 

Bishop was a volunteer member of a wide range of organizations and activities on campus. He was chair of Hurricane Productions, was a tour guide on President’s 100 (P100), and was heavily involved in It’s on Us, as well as Orientation and Breakthrough Miami, which mentors and prepares high school students for college. 

Ryan Berman, a fifth-year architecture senior, met Danny as a sophomore and was his P100 supervisor for two years. 

“Danny was the most energetic kid on campus. When you look for a tour guide, you look for outgoing, social, and funny. Danny was all of those and more,” Berman said. 

Jenny Rivas, a sophomore and P100 ambassador, shared several tours with Bishop and remembered him as “a special kind of guide, one of the best this organization has had.”

Isabella “Bella” Jimenez, a senior and chair of Hurricane Productions, remembered Bishop for his persistent activism, his quirky antics—such as holding up a coyote symbol to invoke quiet—and for “truly making everyone he met feel valued and important.” 

Jason Cook, the new University of Miami Hillel rabbi, officiated the ceremony. Cook read a message from Lyle Rothman, the former Hillel rabbi who knew Bishop well.

“We try to deal with this incomprehensible loss and find some semblance of comfort and solace. And that comfort might be found by dwelling on memories of Danny as he really was: friendly, upbeat, funny, helpful, and supportive,” wrote Rothman. “Danny was a true bright light who always found a way to slide into my DM’s with a message of optimism, encouragement, and just pure joy.” 

Lauren Tierney, with the Department of Orientation and Commuter Student Involvement, met and engaged Bishop as an orientation leader. 

“Danny truly embodied what it meant to love the University and spread that love to all new students,” Tierney remarked. “He always wanted to uplift his peers and show them their true potential, even if they couldn’t see it themselves.” 

Lori-Ann Cox, CEO of Breakthrough Miami, which has operated a program on campus for many years, called Bishop “an incredible bright star” in remembering his inspiring impact as a math mentor with the organization. 

“What an inspiration Danny is and will be. What a legacy he has gifted us and this community and all those who followed him,” Cox said. 

Originally from Coral Springs, Florida, Bishop attended Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and was a sophomore during the 2018 Valentine’s Day shooting that killed 17 students and faculty and injured 17 others.

Guillermo “Willy” Prado, interim executive vice president for academic affairs and provost, and Leonidas Bachas, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, jointly presented Bishop’s parents with a posthumous degree. 

Bishop was a fan of Taylor Swift, and vocalist Jasmine Harris and guitarist Jake Sonderman, both students in the Frost School of Music, performed Swift’s “Enchanted” as a tribute song prior to the closing prayer and candlelight vigil.

Daniel Bishop vigil
Interim Provost Guillermo “Willy” Prado, left, and Leonidas Bachas, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, jointly presented Bishop’s parents with a posthumous degree.