York Suburban grad remembered as skilled musician, well-rounded person


Childhood friends Christy Pavoncello and Lauren Bajorek grew apart a little bit as their lives went on and hadn't been in touch with each other in a couple of years.

But Pavoncello finds it important to organize a memorial vigil for her friend.

"She was awesome," Pavoncello said. "Everybody liked her. She was really funny, always making people laugh."

Bajorek, like Pavoncello a York Suburban graduate, died Saturday just a little shy of her 21st birthday in Seville, Spain, while studying abroad there through Penn State.

Pavoncello, daughter of York Dispatch staff photographer John Pavoncello, grew up with Bajorek. The two were thick as thieves when they were younger, especially in elementary and middle school, Christy Pavoncello said.

She remembers many days spent at one or the other's house and summer afternoons at Wisehaven Pool in Windsor Township

They eventually grew apart, remaining friends but seeing less of each other, though she said they did many of the same extracurricular activities. Bajorek loved being part of the marching band in high school, Pavoncello said.

"She was a really talented French horn player," Pavoncello said.

The 20-year-old Pavoncello, who's in the Air Force, thinks the last time she talked to Bajorek was sometime a little while after they graduated from high school.

Bajorek had been about to go into her senior year at Penn State, majoring in finance, according to a university spokesman. Pavoncello said Bajorek had been double-minoring in Spanish and music.

"She was very, very intelligent," Pavoncello said. "Very well rounded."

She said Bajorek was also very involved in Penn State's Thon fundraiser and other similar causes. She said that is a good representation of the sweet person her friend was.

"She had a great relationship with her parents," Pavoncello said.

Pavoncello said she's trying to organize a vigil for her friend. The goal is to have it Sunday night at about 7:30. She's trying to have it at the high school, but as of Wednesday night the school hadn't gotten back to her, she said.

She said Bajorek's parents told her that funeral services will be a little delayed as there are some complications getting Bajorek's body back from overseas. Right now, they're hoping to hold services sometime during the first couple of weeks of August.

— Reach Sean Philip Cotter at