To the Editor:
Amidst exams, papers and anticipation of spring break, sad news emerged from my webmail. I received two e-mails notifying me that my dear friend Jamie Neal had passed away. Many of you probably knew Jamie as a ball of energy. No matter how much fun you were having doing something she always seemed to be having much more.
I got to know Jamie because she lived beneath me in Mills-Dennett 1. During my freshman year, I tore my ACL and was incapable of climbing the monstrous Mission Hill. Many of you in the junior class probably can remember me playing the piano and constantly playing pool with Jamie. She was definitely my confidante and most dependable friend freshman year. I remember her David Beckham poster that she used to constantly comment on, the overflow of snacks in her room and her passion for basketball.
She was also having trouble with her knee and was not able to play very much. I think we bonded over our inabilities to play basketball. We were two washed-up basketball players who had blown out their knees doing something they loved. But we were each other’s crutch in that difficult point in our freshman year.
When I think of Jamie, I think of her huge smile, her bright eyes and her quiet intelligence. She never flaunted her brilliance, but when she spoke about something she really made me reflect on how insightful she was.
Many of you knew her as a teammate. Some of you might have known her as a classmate. She was never shy, and you probably got to know her name faster than she knew yours. That is how vibrant her personality was. Once you met her, you would never forget her. She really had a spirit within her that I’d never encountered ever before.
I was excited when I talked to her about three weeks ago; she was so excited about returning to school. I don’t usually pick up random numbers because they are often telemarketers, but something told me to that day and I am ever so glad I did.
If you see someone you love give him or her a hug today. Let them know that you appreciate them being in your life. There is a saying that you never know what you have until it is gone. That saying resonates with me strongly these days, knowing that I will never be blessed by Jamie’s presence again. I’ll miss you Jamie. We all will.