Claire Jaeger

It’s hard to find the words to perfectly articulate the brilliant beacon of light that was our girl, Jessy. She was the only person I knew who could turn a piece of wood into a beautiful centerpiece or make a shirt from a flea market that looked like a newspaper the most fashionable article of clothing in the room. A published illustrator, an all American athlete, and the best professional advice giver. She was a genuine and compassionate person, always putting others before herself. Resilient, compassionate, driven, hilarious, athletic, creative, sarcastic, independent, humble... I could go on forever and there still wouldn’t be nearly enough ways to describe this incredible human I was so lucky to call my best friend. I’m beyond blessed to have had her by my side through the most formative years of my life. I could always lean on Jessy when I needed help, wisdom, input, love advice or literally just needed to share something gross with someone who I knew wouldn’t judge me... there aren’t many people like that in this world. Jessy was my comedic relief, biggest hype woman, shoulder to cry on, and person I could call or text at the drop of hat when I needed support. She always pushed me to be my best self and supported me through all of life’s milestones and endeavors. Jessy will always be remembered for her stunning and talented artwork that touched people all over the world - from her unique doodles to her print making and everything in between. Her imaginative and whimsical work was unlike any other. She created a cartoon series which incorporated inspirational messages about body positivity and female empowerment. She was also a published illustrator for a variety of magazines. Jessy will also be remembered for her athleticism and fierce determination when it came to running. She inspired me and many others to run and break personal barriers that seemed impossible. I’ll never forget when we took a road trip to run a half marathon in Indianapolis. After we crossed the finish line and met up with each other, I watched Jessy without hesitation take off her medal and donate it to a stand nearby that was collecting medals for a children’s hospital. Her selflessness was always so admirable and her generosity for others knew no bounds. When it came to race time, Jessy was a force to be reckoned with. Setting numerous records at SCAD, shattering her PRs, and hitting personal goals she would regularly set for herself - she truly was unstoppable. No one will ever make me laugh as hard as she could, to the point where I would be attacking people around me gasping for air at her hilarity. Jessy was always her authentic, unapologetic self, embracing her weird and taking pride in who she was. She made others, including myself, feel comfortable in their skin and inspired people to be who they truly are. Jessy valued the important things in life like people and places, warm cookies, freshly picked wild flowers, and rainstorms. She wasn’t interested in lavish or expensive things, so it didn’t surprise me how she lived out of two suitcases with no AC. She was a thrifter, a traveler, and the best “bad” dancer - there was never a dull moment with this girl. She was always down for random adventures or trying something new. I see her in nature’s beauty all the time now and remind myself the importance of stopping to smell the flowers the way she always did. If Jessy were to leave this earth in any way, I’m not surprised it was because of her big beautiful heart. I keep telling myself that hearts made of gold aren’t sustainable  on earth... only in heaven. I love you forever and always will Jessy ❤️. Sincerely, Claire Jaeger