Ash Friederich, a Tolleson Union High School

Ash Friederich, a Tolleson Union High School teacher and coach, died Oct. 31.

Ash Friederich, a Tolleson Union High School teacher and coach, died Oct. 31.

Friends reported he died of COVID-19.

He was 40 years old.

“In his wake is a multitude of family, friends, students, co-workers stunned at his loss,” Ruth Montgomery said in an online fundraiser. “In the days that have followed, many stories of how he has lived, loved, and continuously impacted the lives around him have surfaced and largely resound the outstanding nature and character of the man he was.”

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Nora Gutierrez, the TUHSD superintendent, sent a letter to district family members. 

“We received heartbreaking news this weekend that one of our beloved Tolleson Union High School/University High School teachers and coaches, Ash Friederich, passed away. Mr. Friederich’s death was unexpected and heartbreaking,” she said.

 She added there was no information on a memorial service.

“Death can be difficult for us to understand, especially when it is sudden. ... Social workers and counselors will be available to receive your phone calls and set up a virtual TEAMS meeting with you to help you deal with any feelings you may be having. They will also be available at any time during the day to help if you feel a more urgent need to talk with someone,” Gutierrez stressed.

“We want to encourage those students who may be particularly upset, perhaps even struggling with a death in their family or of a friend, or just in need of additional support, to reach out.”

She noted there will be no public ceremony remembering the teacher, as, “Unfortunately at this time students cannot congregate at the school.”