Christopher Hugh Reynolds, 41, passed away Thursday, July 18, 2013, of a heart attack. He was born January 14, 1972, in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Chris was predeceased by both sets of grandparents: Elihu and Dora Reynolds of Kentucky and Ohio; and Hugo and Catherine Leslie of Lake City, FL. Chris was also predeceased by Kentucky and Ohio aunts, uncles, and cousins on the Reynolds side of the family.
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Christopher graduated in 1990 from Columbia High School; Florida State University in 1994 with a B.S. in International Affairs and Anthropology; University of Texas at Austin in 2001 with a Master of Public Affairs (International Economic Policy); and from Georgetown University post-graduate certificate program in International Business Management in 2005.
From 1996 through 1999, Chris served in the Peace Corps in the Republic of Panama. During his first two years, he trained and assisted local farmers in building irrigated rice tanks, which increased rice production by over 450 percent annually in the village. He also worked with promoting sustainable agriculture and reforestation, specifically with coffee, citrus, and native timbers. During his third year in Panama, Chris supervised over 36 Peace Corps volunteers.
Chris met Gabriela Monzon at the University of Texas, and they earned their degrees in Public Affairs together. After their wedding at First United Methodist Church in Lake City, November 23, 2002, they lived in Rockville then Derwood, Maryland. Both worked in Bethesda, Maryland. Chris and Gabie welcomed their much awaited daughter May 15, 2013. A memorial service was held for Christopher at Faith United Methodist Church in Rockville, MD, July 24, 2013.
He had managed projects with clients including the U.S. Agency for International Development, the Millennium Challenge Corporation, World Bank, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. He was fluent in both written and spoken Spanish, and was the Associate Director of Economic Growth, Latin America, Europe, and Global Programs for DAI in Bethesda, MD. He had technical experience in Central America (Panama, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua); South America (Ecuador, Colombia, and Bolivia); Haiti; Africa (Botswana, South Africa, Mozambique, Namibia, Malawi, and Liberia); Central Asia (Pakistan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan). While Chris traveled in other countries not listed here, he and Gabie also traveled together in Italy, Greece, Turkey, Spain, and Ireland.
Scouting was very important to Chris. He was an Eagle Scout, as well as a member of the Order of the Arrow. He played soccer on Columbia High School's first soccer team in the late eighties. At Florida State University he took courses in underwater archeology. His interest in archeology began when he searched the Leslie Indian Mound and pastures for Indian pottery and arrowheads on the Leslie family property, which was established in the 1930's in Columbia County. He was a Master Mason in Maryland. He especially loved fishing.
Survivors include his wife, Gabriela Monzon-Reynolds and daughter Meghan Isabel Reynolds (Maryland); parents Jack and Bonney Leslie Reynolds (Lake City); Siblings Catherine (Jeff) and Travis (Lacy); nephew Jack Keene Reynolds, all of Jacksonville; mother-in-law Silvia Marmol of Guatemala; father-in-law Jorge Monzon of Guatemala; brother-in-law Raul Monzon of California.
A memorial service will be held at First United Methodist Church, 973 S. Marion Ave., Lake City, FL, Saturday, August 3 at 2 P.M. Visitation with the family will be in Fellowship Hall after the service. Anyone wishing to make a donation in lieu of flowers in Christopher's name may give to the educational fund for Meghan Reynolds. Contributions can be made out to Maryland College Investment Plan and mailed to Gabriela Monzon-Reynolds at 17107 Briardale Road, Derwood, MD 20855.
Published in Lake City Reporter on July 28, 2013