Updated Sept. 1
There will be a celebration of life in his honor Friday Sep. 2 from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at Pine View in the gym. There will be a video presentation commemorating his life at the event.
Jamie Myers, class of 2015 alumnus, passed away Aug. 24 surrounded by family. Myers was diagnosed May 15, 2014 with a cancerous brain tumor in part of his brain stem.
Myers was an integral part of Pine View’s campus and spirit. He joined Pine View as a third grader and continued his studies until graduating while undergoing chemotherapy treatments. In October of his final year at school, Myers battled against 14 other twelfth graders to earn the legendary title of Mr. Pine View. After graduating, Myers enrolled in online classes at State College of Florida in hopes of becoming a math teacher.
Principal Dr. Stephen Covert said in an email to Pine View staff, “These are always terribly difficult times when someone so young, whose life is so full of promise and potential, is cut short, and our guidance staff is available to help any student or faculty member who may wish to talk or need someone to listen.”
On Jan. 29 of last year, Myers was surprised and granted his wish on campus by the Make-A-Wish Foundation. The foundation granted Myers and his family a trip to New York City to see Myers’s favorite singer, Regina Spektor, in a private concert. Myers’s family now wishes to give back to the foundation that allowed Myers to inspire others.
Chris Myers, Jamie’s father, said, “The Make-A-Wish Foundation has done so much for us and we just want to pay it back. Jamie was able to throw the first pitch at a professional baseball game April 7 of last year and speak at events at Michael’s on East… We just want others to benefit from the foundation the same way that Jamie did.”
Chris Myers has felt an impact from knowing and raising Jamie. “He was my best friend and he has made me proud to be his parent. Jamie would want to tell Pine View students firstly to carry on… Also to make good grades, make good friends, and always be sensitive to their needs. He simply loved Pine View and he loved that his sister [seventh grader Jayne Myers] is a part of this great community.”
Jamie’s close friend and fellow alumna of the Class of 2015, Michala Head, echoed these same sentiments. “Jamie would want to leave a legacy of love, compassion, and tolerance to continue at Pine View,” Head said. “He made an emphasis of being respectful of people’s gifts and not just noticing their illness.”
Teachers and friends alike all shared the same message about Myers: he never failed to be positive no matter what he was enduring.
Myers’s AP Literature and Composition teacher, Dr. Paul Dean, shared thoughts on having Myers as a student. “I had Jamie when he was a senior and he was a total sweetheart in my class. Jamie worked at a record store in the mall and I would challenge him by asking if he knew of certain obscure music bands. No matter how obscure the band was, Jamie would search through depths of vinyl records for it and bring me whatever record I asked for. Jamie was the most upbeat and strong person,” Dean said.
Attendance Secretary Maureen Borden was a friend to Myers and recalls her first meeting with him. Borden said, “Jamie, my son, and a few other friends were at my house when I came in from work. I walked into my kitchen and immediately this boy takes a flying leap directly over my living room couch, lands in front of me with an enormous smile and wearing Captain America spandex! He said, ‘Hi Mrs. Borden, I’m Jamie, how are you?’ He radiated happiness and had a genuine interest in me. That moment made me laugh and smile, and it still does every time I remember it — I think everyone has a ‘Jamie moment’ just like this one!”
Assistant Principal Jennifer Nzeza knew Myers both in and out of school. “I was on the board for Jamie’s black belt test at West Coast Martial Arts Academy and knew Jamie well. I saw him at the pinnacle of his youth at his successful testing for his black belt, which was such a significant moment,” Nzeza said. “Jamie was always so polite and so thoughtful. He will be missed.”
Rest in peace Jamie Myers. Pine View was lucky to have known you.
Read here to learn about the fundraising concert held at Pine View for Jamie in 2015:
Read here about Jamie’s surprise wish being granted on campus and watch video footage of the event: