Jake ~ Pay It Forward

A year ago today I lost a friend.  His name was Jake.  We worked together at Caribou.  Jake was something really special.  I remember the nights we worked together we would talk about relationships and politics and God.  Jake and I had differing views but our conversations were always good ones.  We respected each other.  And I always thought he was one of the very good ones.

A year ago Jake was on his motorcycle on a 2 lane road.  Jake was always incredibly careful on his motorcycle.  But sometimes it doesn’t matter how careful you are.  A car coming in the opposite direction veered into Jake’s lane.  The driver was having a diabetic attack.  The car hit Jake head on and although Jake was wearing his helmet his hit the ground and died on impact.

Jake was one of the best people I ever met.  The day he died the world lost someone amazing.  He was only 22.  And yet he touched so many lives.  To this day I can still go on his Facebook page and read the messages that so many people who left him have left.  He impacted so many people in his short time.  And anyone who knew Jake knows what it was to be a friend of his.

Today, in honor of Jake, I encourage you all to try to find a way to pay it forward.  That was something Jake talked about a lot and he was the type of person to go out of his way to help someone else.  I know wherever he is he’s got to be having an absolute blast and I also know he would want the rest of us to still be spreading his positive outlook to others.  So please today take time out of your life to spread some love and positivity.  I know I would appreciate it and so would Jake.

“I try not to judge people. I usually think it is hard to really hate someone. I try to adapt to the people that surround me. I feel like I have a moldable personality. Can’t everyone just get alone?” -Jake Benesh (05/12/88 – 08/6/10)


  1. says

    I remember when this happened and it touched me so much to see how much of an impact he had on your life and the lives of others. I am definitely inspired by him and his commitment to others.

  2. says

    Thanks so much for sharing about Jake. Just last night I was weeping little tears for a friend of mine that passed 12 years ago and would have been 28. I don't know what made me think of him, but most of the time I try to remember him and smile. I live for the good times with Tyler and am so pleased he touched my life, as Jake touched yours.

    Paying it forward today, for sure.
    Life's too short — "Treasure each other in the recognition that we do not know how long we shall have each other." – Joshua L. Liebman

  3. says

    Thanks for sharing this story about your friend. I've had some people in my life taken away from their friends & family, long before they should have – all from drunken drivers, sadly enough. I do think it's important to stay positive (even though it can be extremely difficult at times) – I think they would want us to live on with positive memories of them – & even do something nice in honor of them! :)

  4. says

    What a truly wonderful tribute for Jake who sounds like he was such a rare gem. People like this are so precious and it's tragic that he was taken so early. Thinking of you today.

  5. says

    So sorry for the loss of your friend but glad that his positive message and amazing personality can live on. Paying it forward is a wonderful way to spread the love of loved ones lost.

  6. says

    This is a beautiful tribute to a dear friend. He sounds like he was an amazing person and I'm sorry you lost him in your life. I love the message in this post and think that Jake would be very pleased to know he's leaving such an endearing legacy behind.


  7. says

    i'm sorry for your loss dear. i have yet to have someone close to me die. it is good to hear how you remember him and have such a good attitude about this. i'm not sure i could say the same for me if the tables were turned.

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