Remembering Jayme

As I was thinking about writing this during the week, I was sitting on a bench near a river by my house that I frequent often.  I was thinking about Jayme, appreciating some much-needed contemplative time.  A white duck moved swiftly in front of me, bolting down the river while dodging the large rocks. It was remarkable because I had never seen a duck on this river, and it was moving very fast.  

Hi Jayme!   

It’s been twenty- two years today, and ironically this morning I was in Boston, near where Jayme spent her final hours.  It was just by chance that today I was there for a medical appointment that landed on this day.  April 25,2002 the weather was cold, damp, and dreary, a fitting day for trauma and tragedy. Today was sunny and warm.  The flowering trees are in full bloom and gorgeous.  I am flooded with memories from the past, and grateful that this day is bright and sunny with signs of Spring everywhere. I’m grateful there are many more sunny days than dreary ones to come.” 

According to numerology, the number 22 unites the spiritual and the material worlds, creating something valuable, true, and meaningful; something that goes toward the greater good.

We’ve been fortunate to receive support all these years to do something valuable, true, and meaningful in Jayme’s memory. After all these years, Jayme’s Fund remains an all-volunteer force, and those acts of kindness and generosity have sustained our ability to help others. We have evolved from the beginning years when we provided grants to small organizations, sponsored educational programs, and organized major fundraising events. Our focus now is on providing annual scholarships for college-bound students and on making and delivering Jayme’s Bears: bears for hugs, and scholarships for success!

This year we received a record amount of scholarship applications. The applicants are ambitious, energetic, and motivated to pursue their education and do something good for others. They already have done so, exemplified by their involvement in community service and academic accomplishments.

Their essays are also filled with stories of loss, physical and mental health challenges, and perseverance to overcome obstacles.

One of the scholarship awardees wrote: “Instead of hoping for understanding, I hope more for maintaining the resilience that has eased my aching and enabled me to persevere. These qualities I now understand about myself through this time have proven to be more valuable and define me better as a person”.

As we read through the applications beautifully written, heartfelt, and sometimes heartbreaking, we are struck by the courage of students to persevere through challenging times. It’s an honor to support and encourage these students who will shape our future. We wish we could recognize all of them as they are all deserving of that honor!

It’s also a pleasure to organize the bear-making events that involve students. We recently held a Jayme’s Bear-making event at Southern New Hampshire University. 25 students joined the effort, enthusiastically cutting, stuffing, and tending to the bears. Mya Dowd, the organizer of the event, brought the finished Jayme’s Bears to Kids’ Café in Manchester, NH where she volunteers her time to help children in need. Thank you to Mya and the SNHU students!

The students remind us of the goodness, the passion, the commitment, and the hard work required to contribute meaningfully toward making the world a better place for all. They are the Jayme’s of the world, and there are many. I hope that you know one of these inspiring young adults and if not, please support them when you do!

We are living in tumultuous times, to say the least. It takes courage to navigate the waters of these times. The courage to be resilient, to take care of yourself and others, to stand up for good and the courage to do something.

However large or small, do something.

Thank you for your support.

Thank you for Remembering Jayme.

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