— Ian Pollock was born on November 2, 1985 and grew up in Bennington and Manchester, Vermont. He graduated from Burr and Burton Academy where he played lacrosse and was on state championship soccer and hockey teams. He was a passionate and talented athlete. Ian attended Skidmore College, graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in neuroscience and early childhood education. He later lived in Jackson Hole, San Diego, and Maui, but spent many summers (and one long winter) on his beloved Block Island.
Ian Pollock had an enormous heart and loved his family and friends deeply. His life was filled with fun, friendship, sports, and adventure. His life was also filled with much grief, as he suffered the tragic loss of many close friends. He enjoyed snowboarding anywhere, especially on the back side of Magic Mountain and in Colorado; spearfishing anywhere, especially for striped bass off Block Island; surfing anywhere, especially in Hawaii and Indonesia. Ian was an avid fisherman. He was a respected science teacher at BBA. He appreciated the uniqueness of each student and genuinely loved and supported them. Ian had incredible charisma and a gift for relating to students. His enthusiasm for teaching was evident to the entire Burr and Burton community. Ian’s smile radiated joy and lit up uncountable rooms and lives. He will be greatly missed by many.
Ian was the co-founder and director of the Block Island Fishing Academy which he operated during the summer. It provided a safe, fun environment for children to learn to fish. Ian always created successful experiences for the participants: for the children who did not catch a saltwater fish at the harbor inlet beach, the Academy would move to a freshwater pond on the Island, where a small mouth bass was all but guaranteed. Ian would demonstrate how to fillet the “keepers” for the kids to eat for dinner. Ian proudly quoted young children who told their parents, “I caught a fish today! This is the best day of my life.”
Ian partnered with the Block Island Maritime Institute and brought inner-city children to the Island, spending time teaching them to fish. It was a way Ian could share his enthusiasm and love of the ocean, outdoors, and fishing with more children, many of whom had little access to that world and place he loved. Block Island locals and many boy scouts also enjoyed sessions at Ian’s camp. In honor of Ian, the Block Island Fishing Academy will continue as a non-profit organization dedicated to providing fishing experiences and outdoor education to disadvantaged children from Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and Connecticut.
Ian Pollock is survived by his parents, Lani Lovisa and David Pollock; his brothers, Wesley and Trevor Pollock; his sister Olivia Pollock and her husband, Jaime Torre, in addition to his newborn niece, Kaia Samara Torre; as well as many aunts, uncles, and cousins.
A memorial service honoring Ian Pollock’s life was held Sunday, November 18, at 1 pm at Burr and Burton Academy in Manchester. In lieu of flowers and in memory of Ian, please consider keeping his love and legacy alive by donating to: Block Island Fishing Academy, PO Box 752, 300 Seminary Ave, Manchester, VT 05254
Condolences may be submitted to sheafuneralhomes.com.