Jazper Acheson

Biography


Update on December 2 | Thank you all for the kind and generous support. Although the grief of losing Jaz is bigger than we could have ever imagined, your notes and memories are reminding us of how many lives he touched. Please keep sharing your stories. 


Many of you are asking how you can help us. We are so grateful for your offers of support. The best way you can help us right now is:


  1. Encourage others to share a story at RememberingJazper.ca

  2. As you are able, make a donation to either The BeeHive or A Dollar A Day (links on the site). 

  3. Check-in on those you love and ask how they really are. 

While we appreciate your kind offers of food and flowers, we are ok in those departments right now. Our need for meals will probably increase in the new year. If you are interested in helping out then, please send a note to [email protected] Someone will be back in touch in January. 


We will be holding a private and very small family service this weekend. We are planning a Celebration of Life for Jaz in the summer when we can all be together, hopefully without masks and able to share our memories and grief together. 


 


  • Donna & Gary

PS Jaz would love to know that you are listening to Nobody Knows by the Lumineers while you are reading these stories. These lyrics were so meaningful to him. You can find a copy of the video here. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6q5Zn_ZkehM


 


November 30, 2020Yesterday we lost our darling boy Jazper to suicide. 


As some of you may be aware, Jazper suffered unspeakable trauma in his formative years that few of us could ever comprehend.


Every waking minute, with guts and determination he forced his demons aside and got on with the business of living his life as best he could. 


But yesterday he had enough of his endless battle and left our mortal shores to fly high where his pain is no longer and he can be at peace. 


We both come from cultures where during these times our home would be filled with friends and family to share funny stories, laugh and help each other through the pain.  This site will have to be our house wake for now. Thank you for sharing your stories, pictures and memories with us. 


We will have further details about a memorial in the future. 


 


Donna & Gary


Donations to the Big Brothers Big Sisters Centre Wellington Bee Hive or the A Dollar A Day charity run by Jaz’s uncle would be appreciated. You can follow the links below. 

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Family

About

Name Jazper Acheson
Date of Death November 29th, 2020
Home Town Elora, ON, CA 
Interests Writing, Drawing, Anime, His two dogs
In Memoriam Donation A Dollar A Day Foundation
In Memoriam Donation The Bee Hive run by Big Brothers Big Sisters CW

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Tributes



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Jenny Tessier published a tribute .

The Year Between 44 and 45.
This is the year I found great gratitude.
On a sunny Saturday, March 7th, 2020 at 5:58 this photo was taken by our friend Jaz.
Jaz tracked us down at The Pub to give me a beautiful card. One I will hold dear forever. We were all together smiling at Jaz. What I wouldn’t give to have that day back.
Now so much has changed and we have faced some of our most difficult challenges, none of which compare to losing Jaz.
While I am proud that throughout this whole year my children have never said “this is not fair”, they have had to ask the “why”. Why have they already known so much trauma and sadness?
Yesterday I had a moment when I was completely gutted in grief, but I was also able to smile upward with gratitude.
Jaz loved birthdays and wanted mine to be special. So it is a time to be joyous. To recognize how it could have gone. Jaz would have been impressed with Frankie’s birthday gift game this year. He would have stopped by and after months of feeling horrible Sándor would have completely lit up by his presence. Jaz would have understood why Q was already back in Ottawa and he and Kaz would have had a conversation that to me would have seemed in a different language.
I can picture this and smile about it because some people just have this incredible spirit and energy and presence that can never just simply go away. That was Jaz. A spirit that will eternally soar and live on in our hearts.

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T published a tribute .

Remembering a special soul .....you will always be in my heart

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Carleigh published a tribute .

Happy Birthday, Jazz J! Missing you somethin’ fierce and having spag and meatballs for supper in your honour xo

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Curt Hammond published a tribute .

Today I remember a strong, funny and engaging young man who brought so much to my life. I am grateful for all he shared and taught me, through the good times and bad. Jaz is a gift that I will be forever grateful for.

Another gift that I cannot put words to is the friendship that Mel and I have with his amazing and loving parents, Gary and Donna. Since the first day we met Katrina (a warm and beautiful Canada Day in Elora along the Grand!) Donna and Gary have redefined what love and compassion look like. Their strength, dedication and commitment to their child humbles and inspires me. I cannot think of two more loving, strong and dedicated people who also have taught me so much. While surrounded by sorrow, the deepening of our friendship over the past months has been yet another way that Jaz continues to touch and enhance our lives.

This picture is pure joy for me. It was the last day of his theatre camp in Stratford and we were so blessed to be invited to the final show that Jaz worked so hard to be a part of. Seeing him flourish and grow that week was amazing. The five of us driving back in Gary’s van that day was a riot! Such great conversation and connection. Even though he was exhausted from the late nights and constant walking around town, we saw a Jaz that was full of energy, accomplishment and opportunity. Today, that is the Jaz I hold in my heart and mind.

Happy Birthday Jaz. You are loved.

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Kelly published a tribute .

Just going to leave this here Jaz—on your 20th.
Thinking of you always...

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Carleigh published a tribute .

Missing you extra hard tonight

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Claire published a tribute .

Jaz loved the water!

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Carleigh published a tribute .

A wild Jazper in their natural habitat. Climb high, J xo

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Emma Spence published a tribute .

Gary and Donna, I wish Jim and I had the right words to say at this tragic time but there just are none. The memorial service was very special and it was lovely to be able to join with you and Jazper’s friends in some way. Its just so terribly sad, I would love to be able to hug you both and cry with you, sharing your grief. Just know that we care about you and you are in our thoughts. The life of Jazper is firmly placed in your memories and will remain there forever. I wish we had known him better. He sounds such a caring and special young man in providing everyone with a gifted and wonderful way of looking at the world. True star. If there is anything we can do please let us know. All our love Emma & Jim.

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Vanessa Montgomery (Adair) published a tribute .

Dear Gary and Donna, you have been in my mind since Gordon shared the sad news of Jazper's passing. I'm sorry I never met him as reading the tributes it's clear he was a special person with a sensitive and warm hearted compassion that touched many lives. That legacy will live on in those who were closest to him. As I've prayed for you I've sensed God saying two things that I would like to share with you - that Jazper knew he was truly loved by you and you were the 'good' in his life. God knew what He was doing when He chose you to be Jazper's parents. A unique and special couple for a unique and special child. In your grief and despair may you know peace and comfort. With love and sincere sympathy, Vanessa

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Alana Amlinger published a tribute .

I feel incredibly lucky to have gotten the chance to know and work with Jazper.

Jazper was bright, brilliant and so incredibly brave. He consistently displayed empathy and kindness towards his peers, no matter what he was battling inside at the time. I learned so much from Jazper and was so inspired by him and his resilience in the time we spent working together. Talking with Jazper always reminded me to find gratitude in the little things - like the first snowfall of the season, a new favourite coffee shop, or winning an intense game of Crazy 8s.

Jazper was funny, compassionate and friendly and I will always remember the way his eyes lit up when he was talking about something he cared about, or when he got to eat Nutella with a spoon, and the way he so proudly spoke about his writing, his dreams and the people and animals he loved.

Donna and Gary, you advocated for Jazper so fiercely, and loved him so gently, and it was clear to see how much he loved and cared for you both. You and your family are in my thoughts at this incredibly hard time.

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Carleigh published a tribute .

The sneakiest little elf, whether it was nicking sweets or hiding around corners/trees to pop out, Jaz kept us on our toes

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Kirk & Julie Mcelwain published a tribute .

Donna and Gary, our heartfelt condolences to you. There are no words that can possibly describe your loss. We only knew Jazper from the EFM where we were always impressed by his friendly attitude and winning smile. Sending our love to you both.

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Carleigh published a tribute .

I remember our last Christmas in TO when we hosted 13 people and 2 dogs for a feed of turkey in our 700sqft apartment. Jaz thought the chaos was hilarious, and exhausting - hiding in our bedroom on his iPad while the non-teenagers made a racket. I needed a break too, so we leashed up Goose and Rayzin and hit the Blythwood Ravine. Jaz always loved graffiti, wondering about the technique and backstory in the words and drawings. One time under a bridge, we found burnt logs from an old fire and milk crates and empties littered all around. Jaz quickly asked if we could come back again at night to see what kind of people hang out and drink and have fires under bridges.

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Dennis published a tribute .

I met jazper while training in the gorge karate dojo. Jazper always helped me out when I was starting and always gave me support and encouragement. Training with everyone in karate always develops a bond. But training with jazper and my fellow karateka builds a family value within the dojo. As a table with plates and chairs around it for family to sit , there is a missing chair now and I’ll miss jazper. God speed jazper and thank you for being a friend and teacher.

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Gerard Walker published a tribute .

Donna and Gary, the staff at Brant Avenue are holding you in our thoughts. We would like to express our sincere condolences. Please reach out if there is anything we can do to help. We have made a donation from the Brant Staff to Big Brothers Big Sisters.

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Carol published a tribute .

Donna & Gary,
We know too well, there's nothing more sad than losing a child.
Jazper was lucky to have you both & your unconditional love you provided.
Jazper's AMAZING smile will be cherished in our minds forever !
HUGS from Carol & Joe

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Ange Becker published a tribute .

Donna and Gary, my heart goes out to you both. The love and support you gave Jazper was well noticed whenever he spoke of you.
I was fortunate to get to know Jazper on the grade 8 trip to Quebec. Many memories of him during this trip, but my favourite was the chats we would have while traveling or sitting near each other. He opened up a bit to me, shared some of his story and how he felt he was a lone wolf. I remember him picking up a souvenir that had a wolf on it. When he talked of you and his family, there was so much pride in his voice.
I’m thankful I was able to keep in touch through the market and thoroughly enjoyed our conversations even though many were short. This past weekend, the market wasn’t the same. It was hard to go to knowing he wasn’t going to be there, but we did. And everyone had such good things to say about Jazper. It was so touching to hear.
He will always hold a special place in our hearts.

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Bob Hallett published a tribute .

Dear Gary & Donna; one day soon we will meet and have a drink, and I would like to hear all the wonderful stories about him you can remember...

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Iain And Emma Brown published a tribute .

Dear Gaz and Donna

We have been heartbroken ever since we heard of the passing of Jazper.

Our families didn’t manage to meet up as regularly as we would have hoped, but EVERYTIME I met Jazper he made me smile, and feel a bit better about life. Everything that is being said by so many people rings so true.

What a brave soul he was, and to have you both in his too short a life is a gift that I am sure he is sharing with all the new friends he is making now.

Thanks to you both, Jazper was able to share his wonderful personality with so many, while dealing with the pain he only knew.

For us, in this very sad time, we still feel a sense of pride and a genuine glow from having met Jazper, and with the knowledge that the joy and happiness he brought to you both and everyone around him will be his long long legacy.

Miss you buddy !!


glow in having been fortunate to have met Jazper and knowing that

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Dawn C. Mcclure published a tribute .

Donna I’m stunned.
Oh Jasper.
Sweet child.
I can see his face, smiling as I gave him a cedar seedling I’d found in the garden under the forsythia, by the garage.
I will be in touch next week.
Love and prayers to you and Gary.

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Meagan Filippakis (Nee Hammar) published a tribute .

I was fortunate enough to meet Jazper in my first teaching practicum at Salem Public School when he was just in Grade Two. I had already heard so much about him from my mom, and he so perfectly matched her descriptions of him: artistic beyond his years, kind, and curious about the world around him. For many years thereafter, I really only knew Jasper from the little notes he'd write mom when she was scheduled to visit. She'd always bring them home, and they'd be propped up on the kitchen table or stuck on the fridge with a magnet. She thought the world of him and, i'm sure, still holds your sweet family close to her heart. Donna and Gary, I'm so deeply sorry for your loss.

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Dianna Landry published a tribute .

Dear Donna and Gary. We are incredibly sad to hear of Jazper's passing. Our hearts are heavy and we wish times were different so that we could share an incredible hug. Jenna has always referred to Jazper as her best friend. Even though its been a while, she has always said that he was the only one who "gets her". From their love of anime, manga and of course, wolves, I have so many wonderful memories from their days together at Salem to watching them skip and laugh all the way to the parking lot after a Friday night basketball practice. It had been a few years since they had seen each other but carried on like it was yesterday. My heart melted. One memory I wanted to share was a time that we brought Jazper home after a sleep over. We walked into your home and he walked over to you Donna, sitting on the couch. He curled up into your lap and it was like no one else existed. He buried his head into you, and you help each other. I can still visualize the moment. It was a true testament to the safety he felt. He was home! He was loved.

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Viki And Doug Barker published a tribute .

Dear Donna and Gary, Our heartfelt condolences to you both. We were blessed to have met Jasper at the EFM briefly and touched by his innate smile, empathy and caring nature. Love and blessings to you both as we honour his life and inspirational spirit.

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Carleigh published a tribute .

From one of our walks in the woods. Thank you for letting me in and sharing your village in the trees. Thought of you today up Nose Hill, you would have loved the open space and it was TEEMING with puppers.

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Denyse Guy published a tribute .

I went to the market today looking for you.
Found your memorial candle and flowers for you.
So sad. TRIBUTES to you.
You were a shining star!
Sincere condolences to the family.

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Sándor Wolkensperg published a tribute .

I had a special affection for Jasper from the moment we first met many years ago. This picture is from the 2019 version of our much anticipated annual Hallowe’en visit. This year’s visit was the last time we would see each other. We shared a love of football and spent hours just throwing the ball around. He was, without question, the single toughest person that I will ever know and his strength will forever be a source of inspiration for me as I work to heal the hole his loss has left in my heart forever.

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Sándor Wolkensperg published a comment .

Apologies for the “autocorrect” spelling error.

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Elaine Louch published a comment .

So very sorry to hear of your loss.
There are no adequate words.
I hope he has found peace.
Elaine Louch
( Neils wife from Elora Market)

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Aiveen published a tribute .

Gary and Donna. Words can’t express how so so sorry and heartbroken we feel for you on the sudden passing of your precious boy Jazper. We only met him once when you were on a visit to Northern Ireland. You both have been so devoted parents to him and provided a loving and caring home for him. We are all thinking and praying for you Gary and Donna and trust you will feel the love and compassion which we all send from home. With all our love and care. Stephen and Aiveen

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Sandor Wolkensperg published a tribute .

Q’s #1 F❤️N

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Fernanda published a tribute .

Dear Donna, I can’t find words to express my condolences for you and Gary. I am so sorry for your loss. You and your family are in my prayers. ❤️

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Ron And Lee-Anne Campbell published a tribute .

Gary and Donna, so sorry to hear of your loss, as a family we have shared so many wonderful memories with the both of you and Jazper. We remember the excitement when Jazper first come to live with you, the many times we spent together on camping trips, curling, house parties, and concerts just to name a few. The girls have so many great memories as kids spending time with Jazper, on adventures chasing down racoons, playing cards, times at the beach and sitting around the camp fire. We were all so sad to hear the news, and have you both in our hearts and prayers.

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Ruth Spence published a tribute .

My special mini birdhouse

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Carleigh published a tribute .

Jaz (and his crocs!) came on a couple solo adventures while we were living in TO. Between Jays games, frisbee on the lawn, subway adventures, and trips to Candy’s Costume Shop for scary make-up - there was never a dull moment. Seeing the city through Jaz’s eyes was also so special and I’m so happy we had that time together.

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Abbey French published a tribute .

Donna and Gary I am so sorry for your loss. I only had the pleasure of knowing Jazper for a little over a year, but in such a short amount of time he’s managed to reshape my entire view of the world. Jazper was the kind of person to make you feel seen and loved when you felt everything was against you. On my seventeenth birthday, Jazper, determined as ever (and having only been to my house once), managed to remember where I lived and got himself all the way there to hand deliver a present he made himself to me. I recall many days where everything felt difficult, then I would walk into my co-op class and Jazper would see me sit down, pause his anime with a huge smile on his face and talk to me about whatever he was most excited about that day. Jazper never let anyone get away with being unkind to themselves. When I felt creatively unsure he made a point to motivate me. I think, in many ways, that Jazper had a deeper love of everything around him. He loved words and writing, he loved his dogs, sweets, music, and swimming in his special cove in the river. Jazper grasped at all the overlooked treasures of life and held them close. From Starbucks frappuccinos, to the latest picture or story of my dog he appreciated everything he had. I leave some words Jazper wrote to me in a card once, because I feel as though they perfectly encapsulate how I (and many others, I’m sure) feel about getting the privilege of knowing Jazper. “I wanted to let you know that you’re special and that I can’t put into words how grateful I am that you let me into your friend group.” Rest easily Jazper, thank you for lighting up the lives of everyone around you.

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Abby Bloor published a tribute .

Donna and Gary,
I have not had the chance of being introduced to you yet, but I cannot even begin to fathom what either of you must be feeling right now. I am so sorry for your loss.
Since Jazper’s life touched so many people in so many ways, his depart leaves all the same people in total devastation.
Jazper and I spent many many sleepless nights sharing our writing, newest creative ideas and finished products. We spent our spare periods in highschool talking and laughing in the Hub.
I was hoping at some point to get in touch with you as I have an idea for commemorating jazper. When the time is right, please let me know if this would be possible.
Thank you, and again I am so sorry.
Abby

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Curt published a comment .

Hi Abby. Donna and Gary are very touched by your note and offer too celebrate Jaz. Can you reach out to [email protected] in January and they will get in touch with you after that. Thanks so much.

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Charley Smeltzer published a tribute .

I am so sorry for your loss. I remember when Jazper and I were young we spent most of our play dates in trees. I will cherish our memories together (like the time we got caught in the rain and I had to borrow your clothes). Or the time I borrowed your bike and got lost in Elora! I always looked forward to our hallway chats between classes in high school and I’m sorry we ever lost touch. You were a light and always a listening ear for everyone. You will never be forgotten brother. Rest easy

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Alan Wishart published a tribute .

Gary and Donna.
So so sorry to hear this awful news Gary. I'm just at a loss what to say. I know we haven't been in contact much since you moved away but I know Jaz was so privileged to have parents that gave so much love and dedication as you both did.
Was talking g to your mum the other evening and just want to let you know you all very much in our thoughts and prayers.
Alan and Julie

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Carmel Mcintyre published a tribute .

Deepest condolences to you both, Donna and Gary. I have very fond memories of meeting and later teaching your beautiful, friendly, bright, extremely artistic child, Jasper, at Salem School. I was always touched by the great love and devotion that was in your family. My he Rest In Peace.

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Joanne published a tribute .

Donna and Gary,
We are so sorry for your loss. Jazper was a truly amazing young man. He was always so kind to the Alexis and Matthew. He always seemed to have a sparkle in his eye and found amusement and joy in the little things. I will always remember his excitement over a trip to Walmart and how grateful he was for something as simple as an ice cream cone. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

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Andrew Pardy published a tribute .

When I got home from Donna's on the night of Jazz's passing, I found this on the floor at my house. First I thought is was an angel but then I realized its a butterfly. Butterfly's often appear after the death of a loved one. A blue butterfly symbolizes that a spirit has successfully transitioned from physical to non-physical and is now free. Jazzy wants us all to know that he is enjoying his new found freedom.

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Janie Mcdonald published a comment .

So understand this!!

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Carleigh published a tribute .

No one tackles a mountain of spag bog and meatballs like you

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Michelle Doyle published a tribute .

Donna and Gary, I’m heartbroken for you both. I’ve spent the last few days trying to string together a few words of comfort but really there are none. Your loss is unimaginable and I’m so sorry you have to experience it. Your commitment to Jazper has always been an inspiration, to say the least. His life was given a chance because of you and your family and I’m grateful that I got to spend some time with him during family gatherings over the years. It’s been a while since I’ve seen him, but the first memory that pops into my head was his love for dogs, and how much he adored the whippet when they met. I knew there was a picture of them and Joanne found it for me today. Sending you all the love. Michelle

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Joanne Parks published a tribute .

Dear Gary and Donna,
We are heartbroken for you. Sending you much love and prayers.
Joanne & Alan xo

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Carleigh published a tribute .

Sunday pancakes, headphones, anime binge, a pile of pillows, and a dog on each side. Does it get any better?

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Josie Di Pietro published a tribute .

Dear Jazper,

I’ll never forget the day we first met. It was 2017. Your parents invited your Uncle Andrew and I to visit with them so I could meet you. I love art and I heard you were an artist and so I couldn’t wait to connect with you. Within moments of meeting and talking about art you invited me into your room and opened up your sketch books, drawings, stories and graciously allowed me to enter your magical world. It was a world filled with anime, bold colours, intriguing characters, profound words, shiny crystals and wolves. It was an honour and a gift to bear witness to your extraordinary works of art. Your creativity was a superpower that seemed to transcend your pain. I imagine that you’re now one with your magical, timeless world, free to be your radiant true nature and finally at peace. See you in forever Jaz.

Love,
Josie ❤️

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Mair Ann Gault published a tribute .

My memories of Jazper are of a young child, creative, engaging, curious, with a slightly mischievous gleam in the eye. Oh the chats we had negotiating our next steps on the pathway to learning right from wrong, learning how to make friends, learning how to play fairly, and learning how to navigate a world that seemed complex and overwhelming at times, full of joy and adventure at others.

Jazper was so blessed to have parents who loved him unconditionally, who advocated appropriately, and who celebrated his journey despite the challenges. Thank you for allowing me to be a part of the story, if only for a moment.
I am so sorry for your loss. I know the pain is almost unbearable. It is my prayer that you may, more and more as time passes, replace the tremendous unavoidable grief, with an ever increasing celebration of the impactful life that was.

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Maureen And Steve Battaglia published a tribute .

Dear Gary and Donna
We are heartbroken for you and this unbelievable loss. We have been sharing many stories and looking at old photographs of the kids when they were little at Salem Public School. Many a memory of their adventures through the back yards! Sending you love and virtual hugs and hope that you continue to feel the love all around you. ❤️

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Adelie published a tribute .

I’m so sorry to hear about Jazper. I was in caip a couple times with him and even in a setting like that, he was always a ray of sunshine and brought happiness in any situation. He always helped me feel accepted and cared about and it just breaks my heart to hear this news. Again I am so very sorry, I hope he is at peace, flying high and watching over all of us. Sending so much love❤️

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Barbara Lee published a tribute .

Dear Donna and Gary
I got to know Jazper through the Elora Farmers' Market. He had a style all his own and a lovely, gentle sense of humour. His amazing eyes spoke of wisdom past his years. I always felt that he saw more than the rest of us. I loved his creative passion and that fact that he would be reading or writing during the quiet times at market. I would love to have known him better. I think of you both now as you navigate this time of loss beyond words and send strength and love.

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Sophia Battaglia published a tribute .

My heart goes out to you two and everyone who was close to him <3 I wanted to share a few memories I had of Jazper as we grew up around the corner and went to school for many years. One moment that has been in my mind recently, is the bus line. Each morning before school, when we were young we would race as fast as we could to the house next door, throwing our bags down trying to get a spot in line so we could've been first on the bus. Jazper was always the first one, we tried to beat him many times but he was way too quick and was always early. Those mornings we shared many sweet moments a laughs as we played in the snow or leaves near the bus stop. I will treasure all the moments we had, and am honoured we got to share them. We continued to grow together through Salem public school and down Mathieson and Sophia street. We played soccer and football together, and he was always my biggest competitor in track and field. There are many lovely memories, and there are too many to fit in this small box. I hope he found peace and I will always cherish the memories we shared. Sending peace and comfort to you both.

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Jean Acheson published a tribute .

Dearest Gary and Donna, you know how devastated I am to hear such tragic news and wish with all my heart I could be with you now. You have poured yourselves out in unconditional loving care since that frightened yet brave little girl arrived in your home. Along with Jayne & her family I feel so privileged to have been first in your families to meet with little Katrina at that time. I vividly recall the toy picnic set she had prepared for Adam and Anna with three places, the fun in the paddling pool & hammock and the visits to the Water Park and Museums. Already you looked like a little family.
Though distance and circumstances prevented us meeting very much we kept in touch: skype at Christmas to display our presents, phoning and cards, letters & drawings for Birthdays etc. Each time you did visit Katrina entwined herself further round our hearts..... Oh that beautiful smile xx
Later I could only support from afar your difficult journey with love and prayers but am so glad to read those wonderful tributes to Jaz and know how much he was loved and appreciated. You all did a great job.
I'm truly heartbroken to have lost such a beautiful grandchild to whom I was always Grannyarmagh
May God comfort and sustain you both in the coming difficult days.
With all my Love Mum

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Dorothy Key published a tribute .

Donna & Gary - Please accept our heartfelt condolences on the loss of Jazper. May the many memories bring you some comfort in the days to come. The Grand River Agricultural Society has made a donation to the BHive in Jazper's name.

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Jerry Van Esch published a tribute .

Donna and Gary, I am so sorry for your loss.

Jazper was a wonderful caring person. I first met Jaz many years ago at Gorge Karate. He worked hard and made it to brown belt before the acting bug took him away from the dojo. I enjoyed teaching Jaz and watching his success at tournaments and gradings.

More recently I enjoyed having Jaz on my Riverfest team. He was a real asset to the team staying beyond his shift time because he wanted to help. It is no secret that Jaz stayed for the free pizza and a good laugh with the others. He will be missed by the Riverfest team for sure.

I will miss his smiling face on Saturday mornings at the Farmers Market. Astrid and I would often stop and have a nice chat with him while picking up our microgreens.

Jazper may you rest in peace my friend.

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Rachel Pinnington published a tribute .

Donna and Gary. My heart is aching hearing the news of Jazper’s passing - more for you than for him - because indeed he’s frolicking in heaven surrounded by dogs without a care in the world.

My memories of you as a family were summed up once by Bernie Doyle when he said that Jazper won the lottery when he got you as parents.

Donna, your training in education, your empathy and kindness, your determination to make the world a better and more equitable place and your expertise in mental health made you the glove for Jazper’s hand. Gary, your adventurous spirit, willingness to try anything and everything, commitment to family, realization of how fortunate you are in your life and desire to share that with everyone - especially Jazper - made you the perfect dad.

My children grew closer to Jazper with every interaction - marvelled at his bravery and authenticity - loved him for his creativity and fun-loving spirit with all of their hearts.

On behalf of myself, my parents, my brother, Greg, sister, Heather and their families, we are in awe of your never ending determination to give Jazper an unbelievable life. In spite of all, I know he knew and knows how lucky he was.

Love Rachel Pinnington

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Adam Rowden published a tribute .

Donna and Gary, both Jessica and I want to extend our deepest condolences. In 2017 I had the pleasure of meeting and working with Jazper briefly in my last semester as VP at CWDHS. What I will remember about all of our interactions is how clear is was that Jazper was deeply loved and supported by both of you.

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Rob And Lisa published a tribute .

We met Jazper the day we bought your old popup trailer. You shared some wonderful family times you had together in the trailer. We continue that tradition today in his honour. Condolences to Donna, Gary and family.

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Stephanie Jones published a tribute .

Jazper was one of the first students I met at CW. He made an impression because of his maturity and kindness. He would quietly eat his lunch with other grade 9 and 10 students. He was such a role model for them. Later, I was helping to organize Bullying Prevention Week and he stepped up and created all of the pronoun buttons for staff and students. I'll never forget that day he stood at the table in the cafe and talked to everyone. Other teachers were there to support him and he was smiling. I thought to myself how fortunate we are at CW to have him at our school. He shared all of his button creations and I look forward to using them every year.

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Rosalind Champion published a tribute .

Donna and Gary .
Deeply sorry for your loss.

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Carleigh published a tribute .

I don’t have the words yet, Jaz - but I definitely have memories so for now I’ll just leave these here xo

This is from your 16th birthday, and your first J cake. Genuine smile and surprise, and a belly full of Mandarin mashed potatoes no doubt.

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Fiona published a tribute .

I met Jazper in the hospital back in 2016. He was one of most welcoming people I met there. His smile and laugh were contagious and he made my stay there easier. I saw Jazper a few weeks ago at Freshco and it was very clear how loved he was by his dad and how much he loved him. Rest In Peace Jazper, thank you for everything you did for me in a short period of time.

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Pat published a tribute .

This picture is not great quality as it is a screen shot of a video of my class playing Octopus's Garden. This is an example of how Jazper was so willing to try new things and work so hard at learning. So many tasks were a struggle for Jazper but he persevered. I couldn't have asked for a more determined student. I was so fortunate to have him for three years. Some students are unforgettable with so many good memories.
A funny memory that sticks with me...
During recess a student came running into the school to find me during my lunch. I was needed outside. At the farthest edge of the yard, I found Jazper with his leg stuck in a ground hog hole. He was so calm, cool and collect. Just waiting for me to come help.
Another beautiful memory...
For the grade 6 celebration, I asked the students to video themselves thanking their parents which was to be presented at the celebration. Jazper was so determined to present a beautiful and well thought out speech. He poured over that speech and practiced and practiced. It was one of the last to be recorded. It was beautiful.
Some students are truly the reason for teaching. Thank you, Jazper, for being part of my life.

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Tessa Heffernan published a tribute .

I first met a bright-eyed and eager-to-chat Jazsper at Salem PS. When I really got a chance to connect with him was when he began helping out in my kindergarten class in his later years at Salem. I was always so thankful for the extra hands but, as time went on, I really began to look forward to his company. He would help with getting kids ready for recess, with special events, and with some more complicated craft projects. What stood out to me always was his incredible skill in careful observation and his sense of humour with his wry smile when something “dramatic” in kindergarten was happening and we would make eye contact across the room! This connection then carried over onto the yard where we would casually chat about the exciting things he did at home over the weekend and our mutual love for Great Big Sea! When he was excited to share something, he could hardly contain it and was almost bouncing with joy. Jazsper was one of those kids who just left a mark on my heart as he was easy to care about and root for. I was so saddened to hear of his passing and it was always easy to see (even from afar) how much he was loved by Donna and Gary.

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Karen Lavis published a tribute .

I loved to see him everyday for years , when I work at the cafeteria at the highschool. I always tried to make him smile when coming to my cash and he would

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Alison Hargreaves published a tribute .

Donna and Gary. I was speaking with some students last week about loss and asked,” would you rather have the opportunity to experience something and have it taken away or not have the experience at all?” They said they would rather have the experience even if it was painful to to lose it. I must agree. Having the opportunity to raise and live with a child, despite all the challenges, is one of the most beautiful and rewarding times in a person’s life. Even though Jaz chose to leave this world, he shared with you the most important parts of himself and you will always have those memories and experiences and his love. Peace be with you both.

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Anita Wishart published a tribute .

Gary and Donna, sending all our love, prayers and deep sadness from Markethill.
This picture is from the first time we met Jaz, here with Joanne’s hubby Alan and our wee James. I could clearly remember this evening and this pic being taken and finally managed to hunt it down. We’d only moved back to Markethill, so with no oven, we’d eaten a mountain of Chinese together and got to know Jaz. I remember her full of chat and energy, playing and talking away. A few years later she came back, full of dreams of writing. I remember searching the bookshelves for suitable reads during the stay in NI. A notebook from my new business was given and straight away the pages were being filled with stories. The stories then shyly being told or outlined.
During a visit to Canada a couple of years ago, it was so good to catch up again. I remember eating tacos and sampling different flavoured buns in Hamilton, courtesy of Granny Jean. Jasper taking in all the movements of the city. My best memory of that night, was in the car as you all drove me home, Jasper laughing and laughing at my ridiculous story of my wee friend knocking a lady’s leg off! It was good to laugh!
Jasper from the first time we met was obviously big hearted, a gifted writer, fun, determined and resilient! Jaz’s short life here so difficult, amidst much beauty, unconditional love, patience and adventures you as parents gave. I’m heartbroken for all the pain that was brought to this beautiful wee soul and for the suffering it left, yet he kept battling finding strength and resilience, in himself, from yourselves and outside support. You both and Jaz are in our thoughts continually, may these stories from across the world and your communities bring some comfort and help, as you remember and celebrate Jaspers life.
With much love and deepest sympathies and sadness, Neatee xo

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Frank Hammond published a tribute .

Donna and Gary I feel very fortunate that Curt introduced me to you and Jaz
He was a pleasure to talk with and I always enjoyed chatting with him at the market
This certainly is a time when”life is a bitch” is appropriate for the three of you Hugs

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Frank H published a comment .

Today I opened a pre-dinner can of beer and realized I would no longer be saving the tab for the artwork Jaz had under way. I would like to some day see how it had proceeded. I feel sure it will be a great image

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Carlie Dawson published a tribute .

Jazper was such a beautiful soul, he never failed to make me smile or laugh. The first night I meant him was at the play after party, we spent the whole night on the couch just talking, I am forever grateful for being able to know him. I remember the first time he had starbucks, we all went in, he got a caramel frapp, there was whipped cream sticking out of the top, he was so excited when the barista gave it to him that he ate it right off the top right away, it made us all laugh. I had liked him a while back too, we connected so well! He was so genuine and pure, it's heartbreaking that he couldn't see the light at the end of the tunnel, sending his family and spirit all of my condolences. This picture is from the after party, almost a year ago today, on December 6th 2019. Fly high angel

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Carlie Dawson published a comment .

I was just looking through our old messages, if you have the time, you should listen to "Play this when i'm gone" by Machine Gun Kelly, he said the lyrics are everything and they really are :( He also said that he wanted to live in Japan, it was one of his dreams, he was just so fascinated by it! When I was reading through them, I found a convo of us talking about kids, he said "No! I’ll throw them down the stairs if they cry. I don’t know why I don’t like kids, haven’t killed any as of yet ;)", it made me giggle, he really never failed to make people laugh. It's sad he never got to finish his book, he was so passionate about writing and I was looking so forward to reading it when he got it published, I just knew it would be amazing, he was so talented!

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Rachel Playford published a tribute .

I am so deeply sorry for your loss Donna and Gary. I am sad to say that I did not have the opportunity to know Jazper well but I know he was talented, creative, and compassionate - a friend to many and strong! He was also blessed to have a family that loved him unconditionally, fought for him, and gave him the opportunity to travel the world and experience the best things about being part of a family. I loved hearing about his many successes from Donna and I know how proud you both are of him. Donna and Gary - I cannot begin to imagine the grief you are experiencing. I hope that many sweet memories will help to ease the pain you feel now and in the days to come. My thoughts are with you.

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Brenda Inkpen published a tribute .

On March 1, 2020, Jazper’s 19th Birthday, I sent him happy birthday wishes via text message. He was appreciative of course and we messaged back and forth a bit. We had just had a big snowfall here so I sent a few photos of the backyard because he had only ever seen it in the summertime. “I wish I was there” he said. “It’s my holy place.” I guess the snowfall in the late afternoon light would evoke those feelings but whatever the reason, it’s good to know that he felt that way about my home. I know for sure that he loved Newfoundland and always enjoyed his visits and connections here.
I’m sending along this quote by Chief Dan George because it’s one that I think Jasper would like.

“May the stars carry all your sadness away, may the flowers fill your heart with beauty, may hope forever wipe away your tears and above all, may silence make you strong.” CDG

We are so very sorry for your loss.

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Daelin Drexler published a tribute .

Jazper was such a beacon of light for everyone at the high school. He was always so supportive of his friends and knew how to make people smile no matter what. There was a time where I deviated from my main group of friends and felt lost and isolated. Over the next couple of months Jazper, I, and a small group of other kids would eat lunch together in the drama room, dance around to our favourite songs, and go for Starbucks if we had the time. Those months were some of the best times I had with him and I am so thankful that he came into my life. When I found out we had Philosophy the next semester, I was ecstatic. Unfortunately, we didn't get much class time together because of Covid-19 but he was so smart, engaging, and always knew how to make the students in the class laugh. This quadmester we had a scheduled class and project together. When Jazper saw I hadn't had a partner and that I didn't know too many in the class, he was quick to walk up and ask to work in a group together. Jazper was someone that I will be thankful for every day and truly never forget. My dearest condolences.

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Elisabeth Burrow published a tribute .

I remember the first time we Met at the Erin Farmers Market. I was asking about big flats of sprouts for my farmers markets, but i also wanted some to take with me. we had a great laugh over the sprouts and my daughter Jessie who was lucky enough to have met him. I was proud to see how accepting he was towards her and her disabilities. truly an angel in disguise .My heart reaches out to the family.

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Wendy published a comment .

Dear Donna and Gary,
Across the thousands of kilometres ... at a loss for words ... will light a beeswax candle in an ethereal setting to his Journey .. ..most heartfelt sympathy on your loss of Jazsper... wlr

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Jenny Tessier published a tribute .

Jaz and baby Falcon. He so loved our pets! Always texted me to check in on them ❤️

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Jenny Tessier published a tribute .

Oh Jaz. I refuse to think of you in the past tense. I feel your spirit everywhere in this town and see you in your parents’ love for you. You started out as a friend to my children but in the last few years you became my friend. Our Riverfest times, market moments, Halloween stop ins, meals, walks and fires all filled with amazing conversation. The impact you have had on our family will never be forgotten. Always game for anything, you would attend the boys’ gigs, throw the ball with Sándor and even take off with us to a hockey game in Brampton. Oh those discussions with Kaz and Q when it sounded to me like you guys were speaking a different language. How you and Frankie just “got” each other, no discussion required. Your ability to listen to me ramble about our crazy lives, put up with me misspeaking and the occasional cynicism. There are so many more things I want to say to you. Thank you so much for being in our lives. Sharing your kindness, creativity, energy and insight.
Memory Eternal

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Donna Simms published a tribute .

Donna and Gary
Our hearts and thoughts are with you in this time of sadness and loss that is beyond description.
While we didn't spend a lot of time with Jazper, as we spoke of him today we realized that we each have special memories we will carry and treasure.
Indy remembered his trips to Garden Cove and North Harbour with you guys when he and Jazper were younger...the fun times on the beach and around the salt water.
Don told us about the time on a trip to Elora when the music in the family room was playing and he and Jazper did an impromptu, lively and full on two step waltz. He remembered the dancing, laughter and of course Donna, taking pictures.
I remembered the Christmas we spent together at Robert and Kara's in Barrie, particularly Jazper's determination to learn to play 120s. Learn he did, play we did, and he held his own in the face of the animated cross fire of instructions around the table!
With the memories we all have of Jazper, we carry him with us, he will not be forgotten.
Know that we are here to help in any way, shape or form that we can. Our hearts are with you.
Aunt Donnie, Uncle Don and Indy

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Courtney Stokes published a tribute .

I had Jazper in a few of my classes, he was always such a nice person and I was in shock when I found out what had happened. I was never personally really that close to him but my heart goes out to all who were. He really was one of the kindest people I’d ever met and I can’t believe he’s gone. I’m very sorry for your loss.

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Ayasha Aziz published a tribute .

I had known Jazper for a short time as my online student in the current quadmester. Jazper would be the first to answer any of my questions. He sure was a bright student and eager to learn. His passing was a very painful news. I am so sorry Donna and Gary for your loss. Sending healing, prayers and wishing you peace and comfort.

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Lauren Dixon published a tribute .

I am so greatly sorry for your loss. No one will ever be able to truly understand the pain that you are feeling. Something i can’t stop thinking about is how the hardest battles are fought by the kindest, most special people. Jazper sat beside me in math class, and every day shared a warm smile and kindness with me. i will never forget the kindness you showed me jazper, i will never forget the kindness of your soul and the sweet energy you radiated each day. I am sorry that this world was not kind to you, may you finally be at peace and look over your sweet family who i know misses you dearly. You fought hard jazper, i will never forget your kindness and warmth.
may you rest in peace,
and sending the family my deepest, most sincere condolences.
Lauren D

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Brooklyn Lichty published a tribute .

My memories of Jazper are from when we were younger. I remember how great of a personality and imagination he had. He was always able to come up with something fun for us to do, and it was never a dull moment. I remember how he loved to climb trees, and how one day he climbed so high that I had to run inside to get help because I was nervous he would fall. However, he never did because of how good he was at it. I remember other small things like him playing the piano, and us eating gorilla munch when I would sleep over. I also remember when Rayzin came into the picture and how happy and excited he was, as well as how much he loved that dog.

Donna and Gary, I am so so sorry for your loss.

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Steve And Tara Champion published a tribute .

Donna and Gary,

We are heartbroken to hear about your tragic loss. Sending our deepest condolences.
Steve and Tara

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Kim Doyle published a tribute .

Donna and Gary, I am heartbroken over the sudden and tragic loss of Jazper. Your loss and grief is unfathomable. Reading through the many tributes, it is obvious that Jazper touched many lives in a deep and meaningful way as a strong, kind, loving young man. My memories of Jazper are as a child at large family gatherings hanging out in the yard with Alex, Sophie and Amy making his way into the clan.
You both offered Jazper a wonderful life filled with love, joy and support. You went above and beyond to help Jazper along a difficult journey. You are two of the strongest people I know and you will find peace in all of this madness. Cherish your memories and lean on the circle of love and support that surrounds you both. Virtual hugs for now❤️
Kim

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Ruth Spence published a tribute .

I have tried so many times to write this, words do not seem enough…Gary, Donna my heart is truly broken in 2 for both of you I just want to take you both and hug you for the longest time, Over the past few days I have been thinking of the absolutely wonderful child you have raised, reading through some of the beautiful comments an memories being shared it is so obvious that Jazper has made a lasting impression on everyone he has ever met and this is down to the love support and wisdom that you 2 have given in abundance since the first time you all met, truly truly wonderful and strongest parents. I love you both xx
Jaz called me Rusty Ruth (I think because I couldn’t keep up with him and Rayzin) and we had so much fun together when I was in Elora and when you all came home to Ireland. I remember reading stories he had written and being so proud at how great they were. I have so many memories which I will cherish from almost persuading me that he was allowed to watch Hunger Games many years ago ….. we watched How to train your dragon instead, The painting and crafts we did together like the mini bird houses we each painted for the other as a keepsake of one of my visits, Chatting about what book was being read or written at the time, exploring the caves at the Gorge.
I have looked at so many photos today to share, some sensible, mostly goofy ones but this one I kept coming back to, that fabulous smile and I so would love to give that hug again.
Jazper loved this song from the movie Pete’s Dragon and Gary told me it was played over and over in their house https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6q5Zn_ZkehM
Love you always Jaz go find the highest tree from Rusty Ruth and Stephen xxxx

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Timothy Grier published a tribute .

Donna and Gary,
I am heartbroken over your loss. All of my deepest sympathies to you both.
tim

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Jayden Scott published a tribute .

jazper was an art gallery of a human. he was one of the most interesting people I’ve ever met. complex but beautiful. i posted my phone number once asking for an anonymous friend, and guess who texted me. none other than jazper. we messaged for months and had the most brilliant conversations, many discussions on which was better the moon or the stars. the most interesting thing was how i had no idea who he was for the longest time but how he made me feel so comfortable and excepted. that was a gift he had. his endless amount of compassion for others. we talked about music a lot, lions a song by jonquil, he would send me videos of his night walks with this song playing. I’ve found a form of comfort in listening to it. i also had the privilege of letting him come to his first somewhat “high school party” it was for a play the school held. i remember his smile so vividly and how he loved that i played the oldies. ill forever be grateful for the conversations i had with jazper as i eventually figured out who he was. he helped me in ways i couldn’t explain. i will treasure our friendship for centuries. he was an astonishing person and i will never forget him and how he impacted my life even with just text messages and smiles in the hallways. My deepest condolences, it was a privilege being able to know him.

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Gary published a tribute .

A boy and his dog

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Christopher Jess published a tribute .

I'm so thankful for the very short interaction I had with Jazper at the Elora Farmer's Market. He approached with a kind of light and wonder that few would when meeting someone new and I was the recipient of that light and recognized it immediately. I do wish I had been less busy and paused long enough to really take it in more fully. Learning about his time at CWDHS these last few days, his writings and efforts to create worlds through theater leave me with a desire to celebrate his words. I want to see one of his plays, read his writings! Everyone I've spoken to who knew you expressed gratitude, so you you have left something special here with us. My heartfelt condolences to Donna, Gary and you family during this tragic loss.

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Matthew Pinhorn published a tribute .

Donna and Gary,

Although we were only in Jazper's presence a couple of times, reading these posts have helped us to know him better and realize what a wonderful soul he had.

Donna, my fondest memory of Jazper is watching you and him dance at Mom and Dad's 50th wedding anniversary.

We wish there is something we could do to take away the sadness you are experiencing. Please know that we are thinking of you and wishing you peace and comfort.

Matthew and Tracy

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Seamus, Annika, Kara, And Rob published a tribute .

So many special and amazing words about Jaz on this page. Our family was very fortunate to have known him and we fondly remember hikes to the gorge and quick dips in the nearby river. In particular, the special relationship that Jaz fostered with our two young ones. He was so patient, kind, funny, and compassionate with them. They absolutely adored spending time with him, and like us, were heartbroken at the sad news of his passing. We all will remember Jaz for the absolutely wonderful human being that he was, and draw courage from the incredible courage that he showed us.

Forever in our hearts,
Seamus, Annika, Kara, and Rob

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Kelly published a tribute .

Oh my friend—if you could see the love here for you…and the indelible mark you’ve left on others’ lives. No one was ready for you to leave. And while I realize it was a decision you felt you had to make but, friend, you are missed fiercely. I hope you like that word: “fierce”. I think it’s apt.
I remember when we first met: it was a neighbourhood get-together. I remember your striking clear eyes and oh-so blonde hair; dressed in “good” clothes assessing all of us—this bunch of grown-ups who were doing nothing but talking (insert eye roll here). At some point having put in the “party” appearance you made for home and returned in your ubiquitous crocs and clad for action (I think tree climbing was on the list). This makes me smile.
We saw each other as neighbours, teacher and student (these roles were for both of us), and most importantly, friends.
I think it was pretty much the day that Rayzin arrived, you came to the door to introduce me to your new partner in crime. She was so wee. Like you at the time…
The last time we had a real talk, just you and me, was New Year’s Eve 2018. After dinner, we stood at your desk talking about art, and writing. You sharing with me some of the trip you taking to become more comfortable being yourself. I felt privileged. Thank you for trusting me with that.
I’m just so, so sorry that I didn’t ask more questions, spend more time, share more stories, take more walks with dogs…We were going to go to a paint night. You know that wolf painting? Yeah, you know the one. The artist who did that, he does paint nights where you can pick individual pieces to work on. I thought you’d like that. But we never did get there.
I just thought we have more time. I really did…
Sending love.

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Amy Devonshire published a tribute .

I was saddened to hear of the passing of Jazper. Although I knew him for a short time, I knew how special he was right away. Donna and Gary, my heart goes out to you and your family. I’ll always remember him and his shy smile. I wish there were magical words I could say, but there are never the right words to express the proper condolences after losing a loved one, especially your child. My thoughts are with you all as you tread through the murky waters ahead. May the richness of Jazpers life bring you some solace in the times of quiet when it’s needed most.

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Annie Lu published a tribute .

Jazper was an amazing individual and I’m privileged to have been part of his transition journey. He will be greatly missed. My thoughts are with you Donna and Gary.

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Margaret published a tribute .

I am so sorry for your loss. What a beautiful person he was.

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Michelle Shoemaker published a tribute .

Donna an Gary,
My most sincere condolences to you both.
Words cannot express how heart broken I feel. I remember Jazper’s polite smile and quiet hello each time I saw him at the Farmer’s Market.
I have memories from Salem school when my son Cole and he would share class together and formed a friendship for a little while. I think it was Anime that caught their similar interest and possibly the same type of books they enjoyed.
Cole sends his condolences as well and said he enjoyed their time at Salem.
Big hugs and may you find comfort from your friends and family and community.
Michelle Shoemaker

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Andrea Gosse published a tribute .

Donna and Gary; There are few words to express how sorry Tony and I are to hear of Jazper’s passing. We send our thoughts and prayers to you and your family. May your sweet child Jazper fly high with the angels and find forever peace.

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Judy & Mike published a tribute .

We remember the time your family came up to the cottage with your dog. Our grandchildren, Jack and Avery were terrified of dogs for some reason. Jazper spent the weekend teaching them how to be kind to the dog and how affectionate the dog would be to them in return. His kindness and patience with them worked and they ended up getting their own dog.
Donna and Gary - Words are so hard to find right now to tell you both how sorry we are to hear this. Mike and I often talked about what amazing, loving, understanding parents you were. We know Jazper brought much love to you but he was also so very, very lucky that you were his chosen parents. Gary, your posting was so perfect! No more pain, just flying with the angels. Love and hugs to you both!

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Arnie Wishart published a tribute .

Gary and Donna, Ruth and I are so so sorry for you both at this awful time. We cant begin to imagine what you are going through, surely to lose your child has to be the worst thing for any parent. It is so obvious that you are the most amazing parents and have poured your whole selves into Jazper with unconditional love. We love you both and our sympathy, thoughts and prayers are with you for now and the tough days ahead. Gary, it was scary to tell your Mum and She is devastated but is quite strong and sensible. We are in very close contact with her and will make sure she doesn't grieve alone. May the presence of the God of all comfort be very real to you both. Arnie and Ruth

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Lu published a tribute .

Gary and Donna, We are so sorry to hear this tragic news. You fought so hard to rescue Jazper from his cruel past. Just heartbreaking to lose him. All our love and thoughts go to you Lu & Rob XX

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Paul Banks published a tribute .

So sorry to read this Gary. Our thoughts are with you and Donna. Paul & Pat

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Tim published a tribute .

Jaz was one of the kindest most respectful people i have ever spoken with. He will be missed. Gary and Donna you are in our thoughts.

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Bernadette Behm published a tribute .

Donna and Gary, My deepest sympathy goes out to the two of you. I know you loved this child with all of your being. I always enjoyed the family stories Gary would share with me and I know your hearts are broken. My heart is breaking for you. I hope you take comfort in knowing that you were amazing parents. You showed Jazper a world full of love and joy, peace, hope and possibility. You gave him love, acceptance and understanding and I know his life was better for it. He is at peace and you will meet again in a world without pain. Until then I hope you find peace and comfort in your memories and the love and support of friends and family.

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Jane Crist published a comment .

Dear Donna and Gary,
We met briefly in an Elora restaurant but I feel very close to you through Jana and Jim. I have followed your beautiful child's story and I am devastated for your premature loss. You need your family right now and I hope you get to Newfoundland or Ireland soon. Meanwhile your friends here are very special. Let them love you.
My sincerest sympathy and condolences.
Jana's Aunt Jane

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Alison Matchett published a tribute .

Words can’t express how sad we were to hear about Jazper. I remember meeting Jazper for the first time in Sheffield, keen to show us his martial art moves, to the next, and sadly last time here in Holywood, impressing Georgia and Daniel with awesome tree climbing skills. We feel very privileged to have shared these moments. Our thoughts are with you. All our love from across the water.

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Jenna Olley published a tribute .

I taught Jazper Civics in the fall of 2016. He was smart, inquisitive and had a quiet yet powerful presence. He asked the most informed questions and was able to bring so much meaning and connection to our conversations. I am so saddened by this loss. I am sending your family and his friends all of my comfort and love.

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Michael Cressman published a tribute .

Donna and Gary, I am so devastated to hear this news. I will miss Jasper and our talks from my chair.....and his ever changing hair ideas.
Sending you love and peace during this difficult time.

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Gordon Adair published a tribute .

Sometimes, no matter how strong we are or how much we want to do it, we just cannot pull the people we love free from their dark place. But they still feel our hands and hearts holding them while they’re there. I wish we could’ve seen more of Jazper this side of the pond. How many lives he seems to have touched. The rest of us can only imagine the courage and spirit he summoned up in the ongoing battle with the pain and trauma of his past. Nobody could have tried harder to help him with that than you guys. As I say, sometimes the ones we love just can’t be saved, only loved. We have some nice pics, and equally nice memories, from a day out at Castlewellan a few years back. I’ll post them here later

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Clare Male published a tribute .

Donna and Gary, I am so very sad to hear of Jasper's passing. He was such an incredible kid. From the moment we met...I think when he was in grade 6 or 7, he captured my heart. When he turned those beautiful eyes on you and gave that coy little smile, you just saw the special, kind and loving person he was. He was so funny! Whenever I was around him and Graeme, they would crack me up.
You guys are amazing parents and you gave him so much love and support. I'm sure he new how much you valued him. He will never be forgotten!

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Elizabeth Avery published a tribute .

Donna and Gary: I had the joyous privilege of teaching Jazper last year in philosophy class. Our many conversations regarding the ideas that were taught each day, always left me thinking. Jazper's perspective was welcomed and encouraged. Watching Jazper grow in his confidence and solidifying his ideas about the big questions in life was touching and profound. Gary and Donna thank you for creating this space where we can share our memories.

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Penny Lipsett published a tribute .

We recall when our grandchildren were visiting and Jazper joined the fun about 10 years ago. He knew the properties well and knew the best hiding places and the best trees to climb. Fun was had by all.

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Erik Drebit published a tribute .

I had the great pleasure of being Jazper's teacher for a year. I taught him English (which he liked), Science (which he hated), and Creative Writing (which he absolutely loved), and he excelled at all of them. He was a truly excellent student and it was my privilege to be able to read his writing.

That said, it's not the work Jazper submitted or even the (beautiful) words Jazper wrote that stick with me as I think about him today. Instead, I find myself remembering the joy and the attention to small things that made interacting with Jazper every day a delight.

I remember him arriving early for school every day, and the half hour of animated conversation he and I would have about whatever was on his mind that day (from music, to anime, to the Superbowl, to whatever viral video he watched last).

I remember that he was a voracious admirer of grilled cheese sandwiches, and held the class title (by tie) for most tacos eaten in a single sitting.

I remember an intense and serious card player, who was ready to dominate at Crazy 8s, Uno, Skip-Bo, or any other game we challenged him to.

I remember a kind and thoughtful young man who was loved and respected by his classmates and who brought a bright smile and a positive attitude with him almost every day.

Donna and Gary, you are in my thoughts today.

Jazper, I am glad that I got to know you, and I will miss you.

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Tricia Conroy published a tribute .

I remember when Jazper first joined our neighborhood almost 14 years ago. So full of energy and spunk. Rascal would bark like mad at him and Jaz would bark right back. Once Raisin appeared on the scene, Rascal eased up on Jazper somewhat!! Donna and Gary, I want to wrap you both in the world's biggest hug and never let go. Because of you, Jazper was able to experience joy, real joy. Acceptance, family, travel, safety and most importantly unconditional love. No-one could have asked for better parents. You are loved. Jazper is loved. Holding your hands from afar. xoxo Trish and family.

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Marilyn Norman Pardy published a tribute .

Donna and Gary- I felt like I was his grandmother from the moment I met him- as you said, Donna, you felt he was accepted by your father and me immediately- his first trip was to Pangnurtung- and what beautiful memories- remember his determination to run around the house outside - your Dad said he would give him a dollar for each time- to all our amazement he did $20. turns.
He was amazing in every way- treating us with respect always and it was a pleasure to be his Nanny Marilyn.
Love always.

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Marni Reijmers published a tribute .

Donna and Gary, I am so sorry to hear of the loss of Jazper. My heart is aching for you and your family. I found myself reminiscing last night about our time at Salem together. One of things that I remember the most was what a beautiful writer he was. Such a beautiful soul. My thoughts are prayers are with you.

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Joanne Clark published a tribute .

The Jazper I knew was complex. He shared so many sides of himself with much compassion and conviction. He was talented, articulate, and had a drive to succeed. I want Jazper to know he was one of my greatest teachers, challenging me to learn and to see the depths of humanness. He gave me the courage to challenge the controversial, the unspoken. And above all, he showed me how one person’s story could change the lives of many. I thank you for that Jazper! May you find your beautiful treehouse in that distant land. You will be truly missed

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Joanne Clark published a tribute .

https://vm.tiktok.com/ZSxb3Br4/

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Jennifer Hewitt published a tribute .

Devastated for you and by the loss of Jazper, such a beautiful, bright soul. Heaven got a really good one. You said you wanted this to be the online wake so is it ok if I say I really wanted more talks about stories and tree houses and more Hallowe’en costumes? It’s so harsh. I’m so so sorry.

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Jennifer Hewitt published a comment .

Reading my own comment I can see there are no words that will say how gutted I am for you both. I hope to see you soon.

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Pam Stumpf published a tribute .

My deepest condolences for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with your family, friends and Jazper’s friends.

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Bernie published a tribute .

Donna & Gary, I've struggled to find the words to tell you how I feel for you both right now. Just know I'm thinking about you, and looking forward to a time when we can gather and share some fond memories. Look after each other.

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Jessica published a tribute .

I am so sorry to hear about the loss of Jazper. I didn't know Jazper that long, but we had connected as they were involved with helping plan the Youth Hubs for Mental Health that are happening around Guelph-Wellington. Jazper contributed many great ideas, and was determined that all youth should be able to access the resources they need. Thank you for your insights, and hope that we can create these hubs with everything you wanted them to be.

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Sara published a tribute .

I am sending every bit of love in my heart to you, Donna and Gary. ❤️ You are so loved, and so is Jazper — always.

A very wise woman once said that people will forget what you said, forget what you did, but they will never forget the way you made them feel. Reading through all of the memories here shows that Jazper shared so many good feelings with others and gave so generously in his time. The memories I have of Jazper bring a smile to my face and joy to my heart. The time we spent together was small, but there was a great light in it. ❤️ Surrounded by family and discovering things and being so curious and thoughtful.

May it be your wonderful memories and that light that carry you now, and that help him to fly to a place of peace and grace. ❤️ Your big, brave, beautiful hearts gave him so much, and I am sure that’s what he has taken with him.

Until we can be together again, know that my love is with you, as is the love of so many others. ❤️ The biggest and longest and most loving of hugs are coming, I promise.

XO
Sara

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Gary published a tribute .

Last night as I lay in bed I tried to find some music to help me make sense of all this and to find some solace from my tossing and turning and the breaking of my heart. I have listened to this song before but its words and especially the first verse never hit home like it did last night.

Go Rest High On That Mountain
| Song by Vince Gill

I know your life
On earth was troubled
And only you could know the pain.
You weren't afraid to face the devil,
You were no stranger to the rain.

Go rest high on that mountain
Son, your work on earth is done.
Go to heaven a-shoutin'
Love for the Father and the Son.

Oh, how we cried the day you left us
We gathered round your grave to grieve.
I wish I could see the angels faces
When they hear your sweet voice sing.

Go rest high on that mountain
Son, your work on earth is done.
Go to heaven a-shoutin'
Love for the Father and the Son.

I can think of no more fitting words to describe Jazpers short journey on this earth. He used to love to sing but only when no-one else was listening, I would sneak a listen now and again and that kid could truly sing.

Rest in peace my darling boy, let your sweet voice sing. It was an honour to be your Dad.

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Sándor Wolkensperg published a comment .

Very touching and very relevant.

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Karen Fraser published a comment .

My heart breaks for a world where Jazper is no longer sharing his passion and insight. I remember him as a curious creative student who loved to write, draw, reflect, think, and ponder. I recall spending many lunch breaks watching him write....write....and write some more. Sometimes he shared and I was moved by the rhythm of his words and depth of his thoughts.
I too felt privileged to have had the opportunity to learn and grow along with Jazper during his Gr.7 year at Elora PS . My deepest condolences to Donna and Gary on the loss of their beloved Jazper.

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Rosanne Pinhorn published a comment .

We didn’t know Jazper well.Met him on a few visits home. Our hearts are breaking for you and Donna. We know how much you loved him. We are so sorry to hear the sad news. Always loved Vince Gill’s song. So relevant. Love to you both. Aunt Rosanne and Uncle Wal.

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Betty Mick-Anger published a comment .

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Betty Mick-Anger published a tribute .

Donna and Gary, much love. I have no right words, but today I am thinking about the love and pride you must have for Jazper's determination, intelligence, bravery, creativity, kindness. A clever smile that won't be forgotten. So sorry.

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Skyler Hammond published a tribute .

I recall being lucky enough to read some of Jazper’s first written works. This is a photo of he and I going through one of his first books. He was very talented, but like all great writers, initially somewhat shy in showing off all he’d written. For that reason I remember feeling so very honoured that I’d been chosen to take one of the first looks. What a privilege that was, and what a privilege it was to have known him. He wrote strong and courageous characters but far surpassed any of them himself. Thank you for demonstrating that kind of strength and courage in real life, Jazper. It was an honour to have known you.

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Beatrice published a comment .

Dearest Donna and Gary, thinking of you and Jazper at this difficult time. Losing a child is the worst thing parents can experience and I can't imagine what you are going through! I am so very sorry and sad for your loss. His life has ended but your love for him will never end. Each tear that you shed will be proof of this immense love ! I only had the pleasure of having met him when he was very young....but boy did we hit it off! Such a lovely child! Its a privilege to have known him during that time and I am so happy that our relationship was so close from the very beginning and for such a short time that he called me Oma Bea!

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Mary Lynne Ament published a tribute .

Donna and Gary, our thoughts and prayers are with you at this unimaginable time. We are so happy to have wonderful memories of trips to Great Wolf Lodge and the fun we and our girls had with Jazper and you both. You gave Jazper the most incredible home filled with kindness and unconditional love, you are angels on earth. We hope to be able to hug you and spend time reminiscing with you soon. All of our love, Paul, ML, Marlee and Brynn ♥️

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Susan published a tribute .

I am so incredibly sorry for your loss. I remember when Jazper first came into your lives and how hard you worked from the very beginning to do everything possible to bring happiness and health to your child. I know he was much loved and will be so missed. I cannot imagine your grief. Thinking of you both at this time.

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Judy Coffey published a tribute .

Donna and Gary,
I am so sorry to hear this news about Jazper. Please know that you are in my thoughts and prayers at such a sad time. I was privileged to have had Jazper in my grade one class at Salem PS. I remember it being a rough year for him, adjusting to a new school and a permanent homestead with two loving parents. I was always so impressed with the both of you, providing Jazper with such love and guidance.as well as those spectacular vacations you took. He would be so happy to share those adventures with myself and his classmates upon his return to school. In later years , he often would walk with me during recess. I always enjoyed those chats. His smile and that twinkle in his eye will always be deeply etched in my memory. ❤️

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Lisa Pinhorn published a tribute .

Donna and Gary. My heart is broken for you both. Jazper was the most fortunate of children to have landed in such a wonderful home with profoundly kind and compassionate parents.

The last time I was with Jazper, he was in Joanne's backyard at a big family event playing football. I remember thinking, 'God, he looks so happy, and holy crap, can that kid ever toss a football!'

As you face the unimaginable, know that we are here to help in any way you need to lighten the load. We are counting the minutes until you are back in NL so we can help you navigate through these saddest of days.

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Jenn Hayston published a tribute .

Donna and family,

I am sending you love and kindness.

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Laurie Pinhorn published a tribute .

Donna and Gary,
To say that we are sorry for your loss is not enough. Our hearts are breaking for you in this time of sorrow. When Jasper came home to NL for family events, it was always wonderful to see him. One time, I had to take him shopping for new clothes. My biggest memory was how shy and appreciative he was. We laughed at the reality that we had very different taste in clothes!

We love you very much and can't wait to put our arms around you both. Love Laurie, Rick and Amy

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Tara Lichty published a tribute .

My memories of Jazper are from his younger days when he came camping at our campground. He enjoyed kicking a ball around in the field with some of the other kids and I especially remember noticing how good he was with the younger kids. One particular time, I remember the moment the kids "found" the treat cupboard. Jazper was quick to show this to his mom who quickly offered up some more nutritious options. Many visits were made to that treat cupboard over the weekend. Some we knew about and, I'm sure, some we didn't.
However, the thing that I will remember most about Jazper is his smile. He had a spectacular smile that lit up his whole face, made his eyes shine and made other people smile as well. He had such spirit and such a contagious laugh. Rest easy Jazper.
Donna and Gary, Kevin and I are thinking of you at this devastating time. We hope you find comfort and peace in memories of your son. We are always here for you both.

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Peter Gray published a tribute .

Donna and Gary,
Words are not enough to express the grief Yvonne and I feel for you and your family. As a parent, this unspeakable loss hits so so close to home and really puts into perspective what and who you cherish most in life. Although I didn’t know Jazper I have friends with kids Jazpers age that at this moment are fighting their own demons on their path through life.
Please know that you are in our thoughts and prayers and if you need anything at all, please never hesitate to ask, i will be there to help in anyway I can.

Peter Gray

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Deb Watters published a tribute .

I met Jazper numerous times over the years. I was always struck at his fierce sense of self and individuality. I was also witness to Donna's unwavering love for him as he navigated a road that had many obstacles. I consider it a gift fo have met Jazper and to have witnessed that kind of love. My heart is broken for Donna, Gary and family. Peace to all of you❤

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Gillian Currie published a tribute .

I only had the pleasure of knowing Jazper and teaching him for a week. However, I am shattered at the loss of such a wonderful person. My heart is breaking for his family, his friends, and his classmates. He was such a creative, enthusiastic, and caring person. His talent for writing and passion for learning was an inspiration. He also had outstanding ambition; I was so excited to hear more about the novels he was planning on writing. His presence in our class was that of a leader, an empath, and an inquisitor. To say that our class will not be the same without him is an understatement. I will miss him so much. I am so thankful for what little time I did have to get to know him, though I wish I had had more. I will never forget him.

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Janice Teeter published a tribute .

Donna and Gary
I have attempted to string a few words together several times, and continue to struggle. How does one find the right words to share at a time of such sadness? I don’t think there are words... but here is an attempt to share love from my family to your’s.
The fondest memory I have of Jazper was this summer when He passed me out on a country rode on his bike. I was walking with Guiness and Raisin was with him as he smiled and nodded at me as he sped past - there was joy in his eyes!
I know that life was difficult for Jazper and I loved the lyrics of the song Gary shared. Particularly, “Go rest high on that mountain, Son your work on earth is done.” My prayer will continue to be that Jazper is resting, peaceful at last, from a high mountain top! ❤️
And for Donna and Gary - Your lives have been defined by the unconditional love and support you gave Jazper. He was so blessed to have you as parents!
Sending hugs “over the back fence!”
Jan, Matt, Kayla and Cam

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Christina Ch published a tribute .

We only met Jaz once on video chat - beautiful smile, full of energy. You loved him so much and you were wonderful parents to him. You are in our hearts. Lots of love to your family.

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Lisa Mccoleman published a tribute .

Jaz was our market neighbour, but more than that I counted him a friend who was wise beyond his young years. Every week he would pop over to our tent to chat about his writing, my baking, and school. We both seemed to look forward to that time of touching base and just checking in. He will be so so missed.

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Steve Beggs published a tribute .

My deepest condolences, Gary and Donna. Jazper was a friendly, inquisitive, and thoughtful student. I count myself lucky having had the privilege to teach him.

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Joanne Pardy published a tribute .

This, this was a day! All 5 of them together. They hiked, they swam in the river, they ate all the marshmallows and spider wieners, they chased the dog up and down the beach. At the end of that glorious sunny day Jaz almost smiled for this picture. He was happy though, that day. He had so many hard ones, it was such a great thing to be there on such a day.
It is no doubt true that he worked hard. He must have. Donna and Gary work hard too, harder than I have ever seen any two people work for any one thing. And what they did, what they gave him, is nothing short of miraculous. A safe home, and chance to be who he needed to be, a chance to show the protective, smart, talented, and complex being that we all had the privileged to know.
We all learned from Jazper, our kids learned from him. Today I am sad, so sad, my heart breaks over and over, but I respect his decision, and I am thankful for having know him.

Thank you both.

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Donna Hull published a comment .

Jazper’s path intersected with mine for two short years...yet in that time, his life force made a lasting impression. He was an artist...a sensitive soul. He was a “deep diver”... someone that felt compelled to get to the essence, the truth, the bottom of things. I feel very fortunate to have spent the short time that I did with him. ❤️

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Sensei Bill Stimpson published a tribute .

Jazper was a member of our dojo family for many years. He trained with a warrior spirit and a strong determination to always improve. He had a great sense of humour and a warm smile. We will be greatly missed. RIP my young friend. Peace to your family.

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Karen Mansfield published a tribute .

Donna and Gary, I cannot even imagine your pain but hope you take solise in believing he made his choice to go to a better place. He was wonderful to chat with at the Farmers Market and I truly enjoyed being his market neighbor. Your message mentions trauma but Jazper also spoke of good times, of Newfoundland and other favorite things. We have so much to learn about helping people with hidden struggles. I hope we get there soon. My deepest sympathy.

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Stephanie Lines-Toohill published a tribute .

Donna and Gary, We were so lucky to be your neighbours many moons ago. Our family has many fond memories of chatting with dear Jazper with his kind blue eyes and big smile as our dog Django escaped our yard to play with Raisin on your front lawn. I would be exasperated as our puppy bounded energetically around your yard. Jazper always smiled at the antics and made us feel at ease. Sometimes I brought Django over and sat on the rocks with Jazper and we chatted about life and watched the dogs run in circles until they tired. As the dogs and children grew, we would call out and wave as we walked by. Jazper and Raisin would often greet us with a wave and a bark.
We will remember kind Jazper, standing in your front yard, waving and smiling with Raisin beside him.
From our family's heart to your family's heart, we send you love and light for dear Jazper.

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Preeya Rateja published a tribute .

I cannot express how deeply sad my family and I to hear this sad news. We have only known Jazper for a brief time however, in that short time, we saw how his energy and smile brought joy to the whole market. My mom and I were speaking about how much he loved her paranthas and how we would make sure we would give him some before the end of the market. I cannot imagine how you, as parents, are feeling. Just know that at the market, we are family and support each other. It will not be the same without him and will be deeply missed. Love to you all.

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Anne Dobbie published a tribute .

I had the honour of knowing Jaz for upwards of 14 years. There was always some great chats around a fire and I often thought Jaz was sure I came from another planet. I will miss him. He was so passionate about the things he enjoyed. My heart breaks for Donna and Gary. You went above and beyond to help Jaz with his struggles, he was so loved!

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Jenny Ritter published a tribute .

Jazper and I first met when he was in Grade 8 and I drove him home after a ski trip. In grade 9 I would meet Jazper again in my Drama class. Seven years later, we still share a love of theatrical makeup, set design, and anything Drama. Jazper just finished a quadmester in Theatre Tech and absolutely excelled in every task he did. He was never afraid to question a 98%, taking me to task to find out exactly where he needed to improve to gain that two percent. In grade 9 Drama Jazper would share a love of writing and always had a unique story line or character to contribute. Fast forward to grade 12 and Jazper continued to write and share new drafts of plays and stories. He created makeup designs and costumes for his latest play. This summer, after almost an entire semester online, I was so happy to see Jazper at the market. He always had a question for me and we were both excited to be back face to face in September. I will alway cherish the time I was able to spend with him. Rest in peace Jazper.

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Jayna Hammond published a tribute .

A recent favourite memory of Jazper was at the Elora farmer’s market this past summer. I was with my younger sister and we stopped by his booth to pick up some fresh greens. My sister was much more interested in the nearby bakery stand with cookies than greens, but Jazper promised her that though they were healthy they were also delicious, and was determined to win her over. He gave her some samples to try, and though initially was met with a little resistance, eventually won her over with the pea sprouts, which was truly a very impressive feat! Though this was just a simple moment of getting a kid to try to like veggies, it speaks in bounds to his generosity and kindhearted spirit, and how he was willing to go the extra mile to show the pride that he had in the job he was doing.

I was also very privileged to get to spend time with Jazper babysitting him when he was younger. Watching him continue to grow up, I have always been in admiration of the strength and bravery that Jazper showed every day by living his life as his authentic self. The quiet courage he carried was beyond admirable and is an inspiration that I will always hold with me. Jazper meant to a great deal to my family, and we are all better for having known him.

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Julie Corey published a tribute .

When I think of Jazper I think of the ever present notebook, filling pages with what was swirling through his mind. This photo is from the Annabelle Chvostek concert in 2012. I remember Jazper being so attentive to the lyrics, and being particularly taken by the chorus of one song "I don't want no peace, I want equal rights and justice" (Peter Tosh). Wishing we could be together to share these stories, Donna & Gary, and looking forward to giving you real in-person hugs. Sending your virtual ones for now.

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Helena Bolger published a tribute .

Jazper was one of my best friends. He brought so much light to so many peoples lives. He was someone who was always there for me and knew how to make me smile.i remember when he visited me in the hospital after my surgery and was whipping me around the hospital in my wheelchair. When he liked something, he was passionate about it weather it was writing, drawing, music or videos. He was such a strong character and knew how to stand up for himself and I admired that. He fought so long to find happiness with himself. I hope that he is in a place of peace and limitless possibility’s.❤️

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Gillian W published a tribute .

I only met Jasper once, but his intelligence, wit and insight was clear immediately. We had a great chat about anime and manga, and I got to see some of his writing. I admire his strength and resilience in the face of great challenges, and I know he was well loved.

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Gillian W published a comment .

I’m sorry autocorrect misspelled Jazper’s name.

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Gord Inkpen published a tribute .

First, there really are no words, but these are the ones that come to mind.

Never seen anyone romp with a dog like Jaz.

A favourite memory came my way when Brenda and I visited on motorcycle in 2013. Jaz borrowed Brenda’s helmet, and we talked on the intercom for the first few minutes of the run. Then, forgetting all about the headset, Jaz outstretched arms as if flying, and sang loud and well for most of the ride.

What a joyful, freeing serenade.

Thanks, Jasper.

Gord

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Janie Mcdonald published a tribute .

Dear Donna and Gary, My heart breaks for you and I am at a loss for something profound to say.My short time of knowing Jaz was always fun because he was so interested in anything I baked to share with you all.I haven't stopped thinking about what a wonderful home you made for Jaz and what a difference you made in his life.Please accept my most sincere condolences and virtual hugs dear friend.

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