Jason Anthony Kaye...
...who was murdered January 23, 2006.
Jason, beautiful but lost soul,
I pray you have finally found the peace you've been searching for.
For years, I have written poetry for friends and family during times of tragedy. This time I'm writing for me. This isn't a poem. It's a story.
Yesterday, two detectives came to my door to give the news that my entire family has been waiting for. In fact we've waited years, knowing that this day would come...and praying that it wouldn't...but knowing.
My brother Jason, a beautiful caring soul, was murdered in an alley in Edmonton on January 23rd, 2006...a week after his 28th birthday.
Jason was the golden child, born in Bermuda and kissed by a tropical sun when I was 14. I dreamt of him before my mother even told me she was pregnant. He was in many ways my first "baby". At least, he was the first baby I remember loving. I even lied to people and said he was mine. The sweet cherub baby with hair like spun copper, ringlets like a girl's and a smile that lit up a room. As a toddler, Jason became the family entertainment, always making us laugh with his goofy faces and dancing.
He had a mother and father, and an older sister and brother. And we loved him.
Yet, in many ways, Jason was an only child, growing up in a house of adults.
And somewhere along the way...
we lost him.
I know deep in my heart that Jason has never held that against us. I know that he has forgiven us all for losing him, and that he simply struggled with his demons in the only way he knew how. On his own.
We tried to help him. All of us. We tried to find him, reach him...love him. Even when he didn't think he deserved to be loved. And we will always love him.
Jason Anthony Kaye was 28 years old. He showed a talent for computers at a young age. He made my daughter (his niece) laugh. He loved to cook. He had stinky feet that ate through running shoes at the speed of light. And when he lived with us his room was worse than my teenage daughter's. But we loved him anyway.
He is not the body they found in that alley...he is still the golden child, a beautiful soul who just lost his way. And I will remember him as my first baby. He was such an integral part of the best three years of my life (Bermuda). I was honored to be his sister.
He fought many demons, including alcohol. He never won...not the fight. But perhaps he has won his freedom...a sense of peace that he hadn't had since he was a child. He was a restless, wandering soul...and I pray he has found peace at last.
Jason..."forgiveness sets you free".
I told you that once.
I told you to forgive yourself.
If you have not done that, don't worry.
I forgive you.
We all forgive you.
And that's enough forgiveness to set you free.
From our father:
Jason and I watched Eagles when we could and Dianne and I just got home and two Eagles flew over the condo where we stay about a minute ago for the first time in the 3 years that we have been renting this condo.
I could also see two more Eagles in the distance...those I have seen many times over the past three years. The Haida believed that they came back as a Raven or an Eagle so maybe I have just been visited by Jason...I believe this to be true. Think of Jason soaring free of the problems that have plagued his life. When you see an Eagle call him and he may come to you as this one did today.
KAYE, Jason Anthony ~ On January 23, 2006, Jason Anthony Kaye of Edmonton passed away at the age of 28 years. Jason is survived by his mother, Mary Kaye of Vancouver, father, Larry Kaye (and wife Dianne) of Victoria, sister, Cheryl (Marc) Tardif of Edmonton, brother, Derek (Deborah) Kaye of Trenton, Ont. two nieces, Jessica Tardif and Zoe Kaye, nephew, Edwin Kaye; paternal grandmother, Myrtle Desjarlais of Calgary, Uncle Dennis (Lois) Kaye and family of Parksville, BC, Aunt Donna (Dave) Arthur and family of Calgary, maternal aunts, Paula Rossetti and family of Vancouver and Ada McLellan of Buffalo, Wyoming. The family would also like to acknowledge Jason's many friends in the inner city of Edmonton and other areas across Canada. For friends and those interested please visit, in memory of Jason, the website, www.cherylktardif.blogspot.com. A Family Service was held. Friends who so wish may make memorial donations directly to the Bissell Centre, 10527-96 Street, Edmonton.
God looked around His garden and found an empty space;
He then looked down upon this earth and saw your tired face.
He put his arms around you and lifted you to rest;
God's garden must be beautiful, He only takes the best.
He knew that you were suffering, He knew you were in pain
He knew you might never, get well upon this earth again.
He saw the road was getting rough and the hills were hard to climb,
So He closed your weary eyelids and whispered, "Peace be thine."
It broke our hearts to lose you, but you never went alone,
For part of us went with you the day God called you home.
"We Love you Jason"
Connelly-McKinley Ltd., Sherwood Park - Millwoods Chapel, (780) 468-2222 to send condolences: www.connelly-mckinley.com
(Published in the Edmonton Journal on 1/27/2006.)
To Detective Dennis McGeady and the Edmonton Police:
On behalf of the Kaye family, I would like to express my sincerest appreciation for everything that you and the Edmonton Police have done in regards to my brother Jason Anthony Kaye.
The moment Detective Michael Campeau and his partner showed up on my doorstep to break the news to me was one of the worst moments in my life--even though we had all thought the day might come. But they handled me with compassion and they answered my questions exactly the way I needed to hear them.
My husband Marc and I greatly appreciated the police escort into my brother's rooming house to collect his personal belongings. That too was handled with such respect that it made the task much easier to bear.
My parents, my brother Derek and I also appreciate the updates and information, even though there hasn't been much in the way of leads--so far. But it is the genuine concern that you have shown us all, and the warm thoughts you have shared regarding Jason, that have helped us to restore his dignity, and for that we will be eternally grateful.
I wish that CFRN had not edited the segment where my brother Derek thanked you all, and I hope that you pass this on to your Chief or use it in any way (publicly or privately) so that the people of Edmonton can see the 'softer side' of the Edmonton Police.
On a separate note: As a BC transplant, I am proud to live in this city and call it my home. But I believe it's imperative that we find people like Jason more resources, support, counseling, medical care and safer neighborhoods or housing so that they can learn to take pride in their city, their neighborhood, their streets. Before more 'Jasons' wind up dead in an alley. Believe me, I'm not done writing about all of this. I guess God made me a writer for a reason...and maybe fiction isn't all I'm meant to write.
Thank you again for all of your efforts, for everyone involved! My family has been blessed by your caring.
Cheryl Kaye Tardif
and the entire Kaye family
ARTICLES ABOUT JASON
Victim's sister visits scene of the crime
Cops seek facts on victim's last hours
Victim of fatal beating a 'golden child'
'Lost soul' mourned ~ Brother battled booze, depression, sister says of slain sibling
Police investigating city's third homicide
Third homicide victim of the year found beaten, left in alley
Third homicide victim appeared beaten to death
He will be missed
It is a treasure to know that you have many wonderful memories of Jason. It is a comfort to know he is no longer here, fighting his battles and demons. It is a blessing he had you as his family. May you all find peace remembering him.
The pictures that were taken of you, from January 1978 to the present, have been scanned and saved on my Computer. The printed photos, along with other momentoes from your room in Edmonton, take up very little space but my memories of you consume my every thought. You looked so great the last time Dianne and I saw you in Edmonton. You were clean, sober, well dressed with short hair and looked just like you had looked when you were at home on Saltspring. Dianne and I could not hug you enough and now we can only hug you in our thoughts. We love you so much. Dad and Dianne
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