(August 5, 1976 - May 9, 2004)
Jay was an avid traveler and quick to befriend people, which meant he left a trail of friends around the world. Words these friends have used to describe Jay include adventurous, fun-loving, insightful, and big-hearted. He had genuine warmth, a creative spirit, and an endless enthusiasm for life; he could be spontaneous and goofy yet readily engaged people in profound conversations. He was always a joy to be around.
Jay and his twin brother were born in Milwaukee, WI on August 5th, 1976. During his early years, Jayís adventures were limited to exploring the woods behind the house, sledding in the nearby park, and canoeing across the lake at Grandpaís house, all under the watchful eyes of his parents. After high school graduation in 1994, he headed to UW-Madison to complete a bachelorís in fine arts. Here his adventures expanded to include forays through the steam tunnels and treks across campus rooftops along with college buddies (and away from the watchful eyes of his parents). Jay spent these years exploring his artistic interests, which evolved from fantasy illustration through web page design to computer animation.
In 1998, graduation speakers informed him and his classmates that the world was now theirs. He took this literally, and headed off to Europe and Africa to continue his adventures. He traveled for a year, accompanied at intervals by various friends and family members. When he returned to the states, he moved to San Francisco to pursue work in the video game industry. Here he got a job with a respectable video game company. The company laid him off a year later (which turned out to be a mistake, since it went bankrupt soon after). Not letting the lack of income daunt him, Jay headed off to India to continue his adventures there. On returning to San Francisco in 2002, he was hired by the leading company of the video game industry. In February of 2004 Jayís older brotherís daughter was born; he took time off of work the following month and flew to Milwaukee to meet her. On May 9th of the same year, Jayís life ended in a climbing accident in the Yosemite National Park.
Jay will be greatly missed by his friends and family. We invite you to travel through the memories and photos shared in the following pages for more detailed glimpses of his life.