As we approach 20 years since Jordan died I’d like to share this poem written by Kimberly Garcia, mother of 10-year-old Amerie Jo Garza who was one of the first students killed in the Uvalde massacre.
Some words from Jordan’s friends.
I think about him all the time, and I know many of my friends do as well. Of those you met from the Baltimore and New Brunswick circle, most remain in close contact to this day. We were, and remain a close-knit group, and I think that the experience of knowing Jordan was an important part of what cemented that connection for us.
As you put it so aptly, “Jordan brought out the best in you”. He really, truly did. In everyone around him. He was the absolute embodiment of a “mensch”. He made you want to be a better version of yourself, and moreover, made you feel like it was possible. Although he made it look effortless to be as good a person as he was, I know (and knew) that it wasn’t… but he made you want to do the work, and he did it without ever saying anything about it directly.
He led by example, and was both the greatest leader, and the greatest human, I’ve ever known.
People like Jordan don’t emerge from a vacuum, so I figure that having great parents had a lot to do with it.
Despite the fact that parents aren’t always able to see and know their children with all their complexities, and understand what “makes them tick” on the most fundamental level, it’s clear that yourself and Michele are exceptions. The Jordan you describe here is EXACTLY the Jordan I knew. I’ve literally never seen that dynamic between any other parent or parents and their adult child, and this rare quality was one of the things that made Jordan himself stand out, and drew people to him.
I hope you and Michele are doing as well as possible in these difficult times, finding the comfort you need, enjoying retirement, and your role in shaping the next generation onward as grandparents.
I will forward your message to as many of Jordan’s friends as I can.
A sheynem dank, and zay gezunt.
I still remember getting the phone call that changed everything as if it just came through today. Time keeps pushing ahead, but there will always be a part of our being, our spirit, that exists in that exact moment in time.
Jordan is thought of so very often. His love for his friends and ability to bring people together from all over was and is something so very special.
He is missed by so many. He always will be. His story, his commitment to creating positive change, his friendship, and his service of giving in different ways to multiple communities will always be present in one form or another.
Thank you for sharing him with us and providing all of us a chance to be on a journey together with your Son.
Sending my love to all of you.