Remembering Jason

“You’re money” – that’s the last thing Jason ever said to me and when I watch Swingers, it makes me smile….

I’ve been staring at this blank screen for 20 minutes trying to feel and articulate how I wanted to start this post and what I wanted to share in my efforts to honor a very special life yet keep it from being overly personal and emotional.

Have you ever met someone who entered your life and from the moment you laid eyes on him or her, it’s as if lightning strikes you. It’s this intuitive sense, you can’t help but feel drawn to their physical being and it’s a bond that feels almost instant. It’s an unexplainable connection and to me, one of the greatest delights we can experience in life.  Personally, I like to think it’s when we reconnect with a kindred spirit.

That’s how I felt the day Jason walked through the front door of my work and into my life. His presence was electric, his smile lit up a room and while I was in the midst of being weeded at work, he had me stopped still in my tracks. My first thought was, who is that Vin Diesel-looking guy and I need to talk to him. After we connected, elated, I ran to a quiet area to call my mom and tell her I had just met the most amazing person.

From that moment forward, Jason graced my life in a big way. On February 8th, four years ago however, his spirit moved on. It was an untimely and tragic loss for all communities who knew and shared Jason. Jason was a father of two, a strength and conditioning coach to many and a positive light to even more. He was a son, a brother, a nephew, a friend, a teammate, a coach, a mentor and the list goes on and on as to the different roles he filled and relationships he built and nurtured.

I’ve kept Jason’s business card behind my driver’s license because I consider him a part of my identity. On a day to day basis, Jason is a driving reason behind what I do professionally and he influences the way I think personally. This time of year seems to magnify the degree that I miss his radiance. I wish I could share with him the many ways my career and life have evolved and although I still talk to him regularly, I wish for the feedback I could see, hear and feel.

There is a tremendous amount we can learn from a loss. Life is so precious and we hopefully learn the fragile reality that any person and or relationship can be taken in an instant. Hopefully loss doesn’t jade us, but reminds us enough to keep in perspective the uselessness of most anger. Personally, loss has given me perspective that if I can weather death and come through to the other side, I can weather most pain. Loss has shown me the full spectrum of emotions and the depth of it isn’t always pretty. On the flip side, it allows me to understand what others may feel in a time of loss. I have also learned to appreciate joy and love all the more having experienced dark hours by comparison.

Jason was 33 years young when he died. I made a promise in my heart to carry his memory, his energy and his purpose. He is so missed, but I look forward to a time he and I meet again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hug your loved ones.

XO

Alli

12 Comments on "Remembering Jason"

  1. Erin says:

    Alli, you are such a great writer. This is such a nice tribute to your friend. And also a great reminder about releasing unnecessary anger. Very well written. Thank you for sharing this personal post. It’s beautiful.

  2. tina says:

    Thank you for sharing such intimate and personal feelings… I am sure Jason is smiling upon you. Great post Alli!

  3. Jose says:

    Hi Alli,

    Thank you for sharing your feelings. Your post brought memories to my mind and my heart about my grandfather. He was a track and field coach when I was 6 years old. I don’t have many memories about him but I do remember his love, kindness, wiseness and professionalism. He always supported me in everyway he could, he used to go to all of my games and practices and always was there when I needed. I remember going to the park to practice sprints with him. He managed to get the best of me and I became one of the best sprinters when I was in elementary school. He taught me that you always win even if you lose if you learn from your own mistakes. He died when I was 8 years old but I swore that I would continue sprinting and giving the best of myself in everything Id do. I enrolled in tournaments and competitions when I was in high school and then college and I succeeded and failed too but that pushed me to get better. And you know what, all of that built the fitness foundation that I have now and I try to share it with my friends,clients and colleagues everytime I can. Furthermore, he used to take me around the city and teach me the value of life everytime he could like when we found homeless people or kids begging for money in the streets of Lima. Everyday was a life lesson which I will always carry with me. I knew him for a very short time but what he taught me was priceless. I missed him a lot but I will always have his image and memories in my mind and my heart. He is part of me now. Every achievement I get in my life is due to him, he always inspires me to be a better person and I always feel empowered by him when I have a problem or when going through a rough time. I am sure Jason means the same to you and he is part of you now. You will always bring him to life in whatever you do either if you succeed or not cause he inspires you to become better everytime . Today is my 32nd birthday and I consider your post as a gift. Thank you!!!

    • allimckee says:

      Jose,

      First of all, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!

      Thanks so very much for sharing all that with me. I read this before work today and it made me smile so big. I enjoyed reading the memories you have with your grandfather and the ways he has influenced your life. It sounds like your grandfather was quite an amazing man, parent and teacher. That is so cool. It also sounds like he lives on through you and you honor him well. I can’t thank you enough for sharing such a personal message.. it really made me smile and gave back to me in a big way.

  4. Lisa says:

    This is just another reason, Alli.. I consider you “My Girl”… sending love your way as always “My Alli Girl”

  5. Beth Gallihue says:

    Beautifully said!

  6. Rachel says:

    Hey Alli,

    I have only just had the opportunity to read this post.

    I can’t express how touched and moved I was when reading it! I think the death of a loved and cherished one provides us with a new perspective on life. You learn not to take time for granted, nor the relationships that we are so fortunate to have. People make life what it is.

    This was a beautiful post and I am not ashamed to say that tears were forming!

    Thanks for sharing :-)

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