September 12, 2019
Julie Colleen Jackson was never long among strangers. Raised in Chilliwack, Julie’s passions and personality made her a true citizen of the world and helped create her greatest legacy: a global tribe of loved and loving friends and family whose lives she touched and who mourn her loss together across time zones, borders and languages.
Julie displayed a zest for life from a young age. Road trips and camping with her family, weekends spent playing with her sister and cousins at her Uncle Hughie’s farm and Vancouver Canadians baseball games were some of her favourite activities. Her love of learning and sense of adventure developed early and never left.
From a high school exchange in Germany, to her undergrad and graduate studies at UBC â€” including a scholarship that took her to Australia for a year â€” to stints in Victoria, Inuvik, Edmonton, Yellowknife and Vancouver, Julie made an impact wherever she called home. She was a tireless champion of social justice and had an insatiable thirst for politics. Julie devoted her extraordinary professional life to Aboriginal rights and reconciliation and spent countless hours in her spare time campaigning for and donating to progressive candidates in whatever riding she was living in when an election happened.
Her love of beauty shone through in every space she ever designed, every theme party she ever planned, every floral arrangement she ever produced, every spectacular meal she ever cooked.
Julie’s gift for languages and love of culture fueled a wanderlust that took her around the world. She gathered friends in every stop and loved every moment of every trip, but she found her soul in Italy and India.
It was shortly after her second trip to India in 2018 â€” a trip that inspired her to immediately start planning her third â€” that she was diagnosed with cancer. She spent the next 16 months between appointments and treatments and symptoms, filling her hospital room with friends and family, sharing and making memories, and squeezing every last drop of joy and laughter out of every day.
Julie left us on Thursday, September 12th. Her love, light, and lessons will be with us forever.
Greatly loved, Julie will be dearly missed by her mother, Diane; sister, Lisa; brother-in-law, Brent; her beloved nephews, Carter and Nolan; father, Hugh; numerous aunts, uncles and cousins, and her precious cat, Jojo. As a family, we are broken-hearted without her but will find our way by remembering the joy, wit and generosity she brought to our world and the lives of others.
Even in her final months, Julie continued to plan and dream to make her corner of the world better and brighter. In lieu of flowers, Julie wished for her friends and family to donate to a memorial fund in her name at UBC to support an undergraduate Indigenous student award in the Faculty of Arts. memorial.support.ubc.ca/julie-jackson
A celebration of Julie’s life will be held at the UBC Robert H. Lee Alumni Centre, 6163 University Boulevard, Vancouver, in the Jack Poole Hall on Friday, October 11th at 2 pm. For directions, parking and accessibility information, visit alumnicentre.ubc.ca
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