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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Silver Taps: Eric Tuck-Otero

Eric+1.JPEG
Eric 1.JPEG

Whether it was for school or in his relationships, he put his best step forward to achieve all kinds of goals. 

 Eric’s mother, Diana Otero-Palomino, said that his go-getter attitude extended even into her love life.

 “After [Eric’s] father passed away, I didn’t marry right away, it was Eric and I for 10 years,” Otero-Palomino said. “He’s the one who came to me one day and said, ‘I want a stepdad, and I want step-brothers and sisters,’ so he selected my husband. When I met my husband, he had two daughters and a son, and he was so fired up because he always wanted brothers and sisters.”

 Even though the step-siblings were not together their whole lives, Otero-Palomino said Eric’s big heart made it feel as if they had always been family.

 “He didn’t mind sharing me with the other siblings, he was a good brother,” Otero-Palomino said. “Eric and the kids, they all loved each other, they hugged each other, you would’ve thought they grew up together.”

 Even after Eric moved away from his family home in San Antonio, he continued to expand his familial circle in Houston, where he met his best friend and eventual roommate Richard “Brad” Boyd. 

 “He was working at a local restaurant here, and we crossed paths,” Boyd said. “Very quickly, it was evident we had a lot of things in common, specifically around anime and cars.”

 Though the two eventually parted ways as they pursued school and careers, they were reunited in Houston and lived together for several years, part of which was during the COVID-19 lockdown. 

 “[Eric] had wrapped up his undergraduate degree in San Antonio, and I think he was looking for a change,” Boyd said. “I was moving back to Houston, where we had originally met, and he said he was looking to move out of San Antonio, so I told him that my house was his house. I moved back, he had the upstairs to himself and I had the downstairs to myself. Even though we hadn’t hung out when he moved to San Antonio, we kept in touch, so it didn’t feel weird to pick right back up where we left off.” 

 During the pandemic, Boyd chose to pursue a graduate degree in analytics from Texas A&M, and his positive experience there was a factor in Eric’s decision to apply for his next degree, in addition to Eric’s aspirations to pursue 3D modeling with a company like Pixar or Electronic Arts. 

 “He saw how much I enjoyed the program and being a part of the A&M student body, even though I wasn’t in College Station,” Boyd said. “The Aggie Spirit and the strong brand recognition of the program with the companies he wanted to work with seemed like a natural fit … so I was happy to welcome him, not only as a brother from another mother, but now as an Aggie brother too.” 

 Otero-Palomino said her son’s acceptance to the graduate program was a joyful moment, and a point of pride for Eric. 

 “The day he got the acceptance letter, I’ll never forget,” Otero-Palomino said. “I was in San Antonio, and he took a picture of it, texted me right away that he got in. I said, ‘I told you you’d get in, I knew you’d get in,’ and right there and then he was ready to move to College Station. He got enrolled and got his classes lined up and jumped in his car and drove his transcripts from Houston.” 

 When it came to celebrating the important moments in other people’s lives, or dealing with hard moments, Eric was always a friend to lean on, Boyd said. 

“He was always so thoughtful, far more thoughtful than myself,” Boyd said. “People had joked that they hoped him living with me would rub off on me. Anytime he would make dinner, he’d make enough for two people without even asking. It wasn’t like I expected it, but he was just a very thoughtful person, and it came through with everything he did.”

 Eric will be remembered not only by his family and Boyd but also by his network of friends across the world, those who he met in person or even online through his love of video games. 

 “He enjoyed life and had a strong network of friends, in real life and online,” Boyd said. “I’m proud to say I was one of his close friends, but he had friends and was loved across the U.S. and across the world. Through video games, he made meaningful friendships, and I knew they cared about him just as deeply as I did.”

 Though Eric is greatly missed by those who were lucky enough to meet him, the memories he made will not be forgotten.

“He was the best son and friend anyone could have,” Otero-Palomino said. “He was wonderful, a loving guy and everyone is missing him so badly. Remembering him and our shared beautiful moments, the smiles and laughs and the hugs is keeping us going.”

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