Article from Menlo-Atherton High School's student newspaper, The Bear Naked
News, final issue of the 2006-7 school year.
None of Menlo-Atherton's current students attended class with Daniel but almost all have heard the legend of Daniel Barclay. Many have heard about the student who took 11 APs, the student who got 5's on 5 AP tests without even taking the class, the student who read 3 newspapers a day. Sure, there was some embellishing, but they do have basis in truth. Daniel Barclay was very smart.
He graduated from Menlo-Atherton in 2003 and enrolled in Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He received a bachelor's degree in Economics earlier this year and was set to receive a master's degree in Political Science in a few weeks. He was working on his masters thesis at the time of his death. Throughout his time at Menlo-Atherton, Daniel Barclay was a member of the Quiz Kids team that won 4 straight seasons of the Bay Area-wide TV show, Bay Area Quiz Kids. He continued his extracurricular academic pursuits in his involvement with the MIT debate team as a parliamentary debater.
The last person to hear from Daniel was his grandmother, who he spoke to on Sunday, April 8 about a presentation he was making to his Toy Design class on Monday. The day before, he had gone to Walmart to purchase supplies to go on "an adventure." When he wasn't seen on Monday, no one thought it was out of the ordinary because they assumed he had returned from his trip and was working alone on his thesis, which was a mathematical model for predicting the outcome of elections. When he wasn't seen by Thursday, his friends reported him missing and a police investigation opened. Daniel's body was discovered on a beach in Sandwich, MA on Friday April 19 by a birdwatcher. An autopsy revealed that he had drowned.
While Daniel was an incredibly gifted student, he recognized the importance of not throwing yourself too far into one thing. He is remembered by friends as an inquisitive, bright, friendly guy who was always ready with a quip or word of advice. His mother, Sue Kayton, thinks Daniel would like to pass on this advice to current students, "at least once during your school years, take a fun class just for the heck of it." Daniel loved the Toy Design class he was taking even though it was not required or even related to degrees.
Daniel Barclay was an amazing student and an amazing person and he will be missed.