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Other Memories of Jake
AMY NEAL LONG (CO-WORKER)
Hi, my name is Amy, and I worked with Jake "Cupcake" this summer while he was a summer intern at Toll Brothers. When I first met Jake he seemed like a shy individual. I soon found out that he was quite the practical joker. We were constantly playing jokes on our coworkers, and each other.
In the late afternoon you would often find Jake reaching for an ice cream sandwich in the freezer, or one of his favorite chicken pot pies. Boy, that kid could eat!! I was always happy to recieve his emails, from Europe and once he arrived in Utah.
Thank you for the opportunity to meet your son, he truly touched all our lives. Your family will be in my prayers.
Amy L. Neal Long
MARC NICHOLS (COUSIN)
This is Marc Nichols. I thought I would send an e-mail rather than call. Jenny and I just want to say that we love you all.
Jake and I used to chat on AOL instant messenger all hours of the day and night before his mission. I would be out working the crime ridden streets of Utah County and a message would pop up from Jake. The chatting sessions weren't lengthy, but now priceless.
I will always remember him for the contagious smile he was ALWAYS wearing.
You are a great family. You are forever in our prayers.
We love you Jake. Marc, Jenny, Morgan, Kacie, and Baby Girl Nichols
ROCHELE UPERESA (BYUH CATERING SUPERVISOR)
Well, that's how everyone referred to him here at BYUH Catering. I've written something to Brooke Barker who's compiling some things, but I still had to write to the Whetten family. I was BLESSED to have Jake as a worker here in the Catering department during high school and before he began his "big life" of college and a mission. When the call came to share memories or stories of Jake, honestly, a strong impression came over me, a warmth of the spirit as I remembered his kindness and gentleness, his sense to be very loving and full of fun. Jake was an extremely hard worker, no matter what the task and how long the hours. BUT, let it not be overlooked that he was sure to make work FUN! I started at BYUH in February 2000 and I had many Class of 2001 Red Raiders in my employ. It was a great challenge for me to learn a new job, but these Kahuku Red Raiders from the "two-puka-puka-one" class made it fun and enjoyable, and Jake was right in there doing just that.
One night we were catering a dinner event in the Ballroom (on BYUH campus). We (the caterers) had served the entire meal and the guests were dining on their desserts. This is usually the time during the meal service when the caterers retreat to the kitchen while the program goes on. This time period is a "lull" for the caterers as they wait for the event to end so that they can clean up. Sensing the "lull" in my workers and the need to keep them motivated to work later on, I called everyone into the kitchen and told everyone to get a dinner roll in hand. I announced that we had missed Marcus Salanoa's (another Class of 2001 caterer) birthday so we should all have an opportunity to hit him with a dinner roll (mind you, don't think this was mean because Marcus was the culprit of many a prank for all of us!). What ensued was a full-on war zone of dinner rolls flying every which way and, of course, none of them hitting Marcus. But who should be having a blast of a time running around and hitting everyone but Jakee himself! I know all of you know the expression he had on his face because I'm sure we've all enjoyed that image of him: a big grin, eyes lit up and his face full of mischief and fun! That is the picture of Jake that I will ALWAYS recall when I remember him and his influence he left with me, personally, and professionally here at work. (By the way, I lost my dinner roll and backed up against the door that opened into the Ballroom only to see MY boss about 3 feet away about to open the Ballroom door!! Boy, you never saw a dinner-roll-war stop so fast!! HaHa!!)
Another night we were catering a large special event at the CAC gym and the caterers set up their work station in the corner with brown wooden panels set up as dividers to hide our work station from the guests. The dividers are on legs about a foot off the ground and the top probably reaches about 5-and-a-half feet or something like that.Our chef at the time was Etisone "Junior" Uiva'a, a short, stocky Samoan cook. I'll never forget setting up the work station, the guests arriving in the CAC gym and the food services staff waiting at the work station, behind the panels for the start of the meal service. We were well hid. We were doing fine. And then the chef breaks out laughing hysterically. I turn to him to tell him he needs to quiet down and he's pointing ahead of him, red in the face from laughing. I look and all we see is Jakee's head at the top of the panels and his feet at the bottom gliding along. Jake's on the other side of the panels and he turns to us and gives us that ol' Jake grin!! It was classic!
To the Whetten family, this is the Jake I remember and the Jake that left his impression on me. I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to know him. I truly believe the veil is so very thin and he's simply stepped to the other side to answer another call to serve. We know that Jake; he is obedient to the call to serve. At this difficult time, I want to share with you that I am so happy for all of you because despite the heartache to miss him not being here physically with all of you, I think how grand and great it is for you to know that HE'S UP THERE PULLING FOR ALL OF YOU. He loves you all so very much!!
Be strong, Whetten family. And know that many, many back here at home are very mindful of you during this difficult time. God bless.
Alofa, Rochelle Uperesa, Jakee's Catering boss ;-)
JOE PLICKA (BYU TEACHER)
I knew Jake for three weeks. I was his instructor for English 115 this
semester. Although I only knew him for a short time, I was shocked upon
hearing the news of his death, and wanted to give you, his family, my
deepest sympathies. I also want you to know that Jake was one of the few
students in my class who spoke up on a regular basis. He was involved in
class discussion and always had a bright, interested look on his face. It
was a comfort to me as a first-year teacher to know I could depend on him
for answers to questions. In the few exchanges I had with him he was always
smiling a little, letting you know he was listening, friendly, sincere, and
exuding a general and obvious enthusiasm for life and learning.
I also have a few of Jake's writing assignments that I would be happy to
give to his family if they are interested. Again, my prayers go out to you
in this challenging season.
RON KELLER (SUPERVISOR AT BYU ELECTRICAL SHOP)
We here in the Electric Shop were just getting to know Jake. His brothers
had worked here and all of them were excellent workers. His Father made
the statement, “ that they had to be because there were more ‘Whettens’
to attend the University.” We were able to kid around with Jake and he
with us. He was helping with the repair of time clocks on campus. Just
this last week I looked over to were he was working. There is about
sixteen plus clocks hanging there and not one of them was to right time. I
commented to him “you could at least have one on the right hour.” He
gave one of those big grins he had in him, and didn’t say a word and
kept working on the clock that was in front of him. We can definitely say
we will miss Jake. Our prayers go out to his family .
Ron Keller, Electric Systems Shop,
Brigham Young University
Dear Whetten Family,
My name is Megan Roundy. I worked with Jake at the electric shop. I also had a physics class with him. I would just like you to know that Jake was an outstanding young man. He was always more than willing to help me with the homework, which I would struggle with. He was always so nice, and easy-going. He made work a more fun place to be. I always looked forward to seeing him at work and class. I know that this is a hard time for you, but know that you are not alone. He will be missed greatly by every life he has touched, including me. Best wishes to you in this difficult time.
From, Megan Roundy