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Alumni News: Class Years 2010-2019

Jim Jenkins, Class of 2010

Monday, March 21, 2016   (0 Comments)
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Jim Jenkins, 35, of Salem, Va., passed away on Friday, March 4, 2016. Anyone who met Jim was immediately warmed by his huge heart and lively spirit. Ironically, it was an enlarged heart from decades of sleep apnea that took him without warning.Jim was a teacher with a specific passion for loving the students who didn't know they were lovable because he had been one of those students himself. In the last few years, he found his calling at HopeTree Academy working as a Social Studies and Theatre Teacher. He had a Master's in Learning and Organizational Change from Belmont University, and his dreams included public speaking to share all the wisdom he gained from decades of passionate teaching. He loved seeing a student finally have that moment of "I got it!" learning that makes them feel capable, valuable, and eager to learn more. His boundless creativity and non-judgmental approach to kids allowed him to see them as they were and help them see their own value.As a father and a husband, he brought magic and games and stories into every moment: He was our Superhero. As a son, son-in-law, brother, and uncle, he shared his larger than life comforting voice, his passion for quality debate leading to growth, and his tenderness – the hugs only he could give that wrapped you in safety and acceptance.He had so much creative energy it was always flowing into online communities, his gaming passions, and artwork he shared with everyone. He was a celebrated Toastmaster, led students to high ranks in speech and debate (after reaching them himself as a student), and taught so many children the joy of theatre: of expressing themselves truly and deeply in all ways. One of his newest projects was creating a blog to help us all learn more about our brains, behavior, and feelings - all while researching new recipes to cook for his family, making his daughter toys from polymer clay, and singing us to sleep at night.He is missed deeply by too many to name, but leaves behind his wife, Julie DePauw Jenkins; his daughter, Virginia Jenkins; his parents, Jim and Terri Jenkins; and his sister, Denise, husband, Tyler, and daughters, Calista and Nadya.Jim continued giving after passing away through organ donation. A memorial will be held in Akron, Ohio. His wife implores you to send written memories of Jim to share with his daughter as she grows. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Jim Jenkins Memorial Fund at Wells Fargo Bank (account number ending in 3676) for the care and education of his daughter. Please mail written memories or donations to Wells Fargo, c/o Dora Hamm, 14 West Main Street, Salem, VA 2415

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