“More than words can say” sums up our disbelief at the loss of a great person, but I will try to use words to remember Jared.
My first impression of Jared came on the Peninsula College Soccer Field during the fall 06 season. As a part time coach I watched him lay down one of the cleanest and hardest soccer slide tackles I have ever seen. All ball and all power with dreadlocks flying. “Who was that?” I asked the players. Jared Nagel from Oregon came the reply.
He later attested to co-workers at Mervin that he could have laid me out on a tackle during an indoor soccer game at the college, but decided to hold back so that he could get a job at the factory. Thinking that if he took me out he wouldn’t get the job. Jared was very eager and enthusiastic to get a job at Mervin and we hired him in the summer of 07’. It turned out to be one of Mervin’s best hires as Jared quickly showed his outstanding character, work ethic, computer prowess and common sense at the factory. He became very good friends with all his co-workers in a very short period of time. Jared impressed bosses and brightened people’s days with his cheerful zest for life personality. In the fall he very successfully balanced his schedule between school, work and soccer. He was selected to all –league team in the Nwaac and helped to lead the Pirate Soccer team to a division title and a fourth place finish in the nwaac.
“Carpe diem” he would say in summer time when it stays light until 10 pm. “You going surfing? Do it…. You should go.”
See you tomorrow. “Don’t die,” he would say ironically at the end of the workday.
Rest in peace Jared. You lived your life to the fullest and lifted up our spirits everyday at Mervin. You influenced us all in a profound and positive way. Though you were only twenty you taught us lessons as if you were the old wise man. You followed your own path. You did what you thought was right in life and stood up for your own beliefs. Your character lives on in us. You are a part of us. Our future actions are guided by your presence in our lives. We will never forget you and are very grateful that you could be a part of our lives albeit for such a short time.
We offer our deepest sympathy to Jared’s parents, girlfriend and family in this tragic time. It is so “cliché”, but you died doing what you love with loved ones around you. Shred eternally ripper. I probably shouldn’t have attempted this piece because words really cannot say how much this devastates us and how much you will be missed.
Starting to plant
There was a memorial ceremony for Jared on Tuesday night at Peninsula College. I guess Jared had made some remark at one point about how if he ever died, he wanted his funeral to be a party and everyone should wear pink… so lots of people were wearing pink, including his parents and sisters. A bunch of people spoke, including the college soccer coaches (Jared was a soccer star there) and the Nib spoke, he gave a eulogy and did a great job in front of the crowd, a side of him I’ve never seen. We had made a couple of custom boards with his picture on them, which everyone in the factory signed and the Nib and Ambur and Eric presented them to his parents and his girlfriend at the memorial ceremony.
Planting the tree
After the big ceremony, a group of people – mostly family and friends, came back here to the Mervin factory and we planted a tree in Jared’s honor here. It’s a Thundercloud flowering plum tree (Prunus cerasifera) so it will bloom pink every spring. The Audette brothers built a bench to sit by the tree, and Ambur got a plaque made to put on the bench. It was after dark by the time we got back here, so we planted the tree by the light of some headlights, and most of my pictures are not that clear.
Jared’s girlfriend and the bench
The tree planting gathering
The next day
Plaque on the bench