Julie Jacqueline Bethune


Thanksgiving 2009

She was Jacqueline or Jax to me.  Sometimes in my head I thought of it as “Jacques-eleene!” which was her impression of her French teacher from Bishops saying it. When I met her though, she was Julie. High school. Fall of 1980 and her dorm room was across the hall from mine. Oddly though, I barely remember her from those three years! She specifically remembered sharing a New Testament class with me and arguing with me over something. Which sounds about right because Jax looooooved to argue!  But otherwise we moved in completely different social and academic circles. To me back then, she was the loud party girl 🙂 All I know is that somehow, in 2000, we both, on a lark considering we had never done this, attended an alumni luncheon at Bishops. A lunch with the headmaster. A couple of others from our rather small class of ’83 were there, but she and I ended up next to each other. The connection was instant. Ironically after she finished college she had settled into a life VERY geographically close to mine and how we had not bumped into each other until then, I do not know. But after that fateful luncheon we were connected by the phone line and email and Thanksgiving or Christmas and Jimmy Buffet concerts and Michael Moore and George Clooney movies and brunches at Ts Cafe. We talked/argued religion and politics..oh yes, we hit the “forbidden” topics regularly and we didn’t agree all the time by a long shot and that’s what made it fun for both of us. True love eluded her, but she yearned for it. I know it’s a cliche, but yeah, her dog was a very able substitution. Especially working from home as she did for so much of the time I knew her, he was a fantastic companion.

Look up the description of Taurus in ANY astrology book and her picture should be next to it. Passionate, articulate, empathetic, obstinate, opinionated, brash, prone to embellishments or flat out inaccuracies to make her point, quick to laugh, art lover, music lover, tv lover, movie FANATIC, adoring mom to Bailey, a Beagle with ‘issues’, sensitive, quick to judge, often battling depression and anxiety because her deep well of empathy would overwhelm her, beach lover, traveler, communicator and above all else, a fantastic friend. I will forever cherish the nearly 10 years we had together.

12 thoughts on “Julie Jacqueline Bethune

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  1. Having lost many friends and family, I can say two things:
    1. Grieve. Let it out. Don’t keep the tears or the emotions in. Let them out.
    2. When possible, remember the good things and good times. The happy times. Hold those close to your heart.

    Thinking of you.

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  2. Thank you for sharing this and writing… Life has those moments when we least expect anything… and then we meet someone and the impact is so profound.. So glad that you got to have that opportunity…

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  3. Christina, Jax was always supposed to be here. It is so wrong that she is gone waaaaay before her time. The kids and I love her so much and are so grateful for how her humor and love enhanced and expanded our lives. There is a huge void in our lives that represents the place she held in our life. Jax knew me on a level no one else did…..I miss her so much. Just like Doug says above, I am in shock. She was blessed to have you as her friend. I send you lots of love and best wishes. Smiling, Susan

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  4. I knew Mary, her dear Mom for over 40 years from her Vancouver times. I only remember them both as being so fun loving, vital and expressed a Joi de vivre! Now they are together. So very sad to know they are no longer with us.. a sadder world. I spoke with her Dad during this most difficult time. We share your saddness and shock of it all.

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  5. I loved that girl, she helped in a difficult time. My dogs and kitty loved Baily. For some reason I just found out about her death. I think I might have one of last people to talk to her.

    I just can’t wrap myself around this.

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  6. almost 2 years has passed and i still think of jax and miss her often. Although we never met we were online friends for 8 years and would talk on the phone for hours. She even joked that we named our son Jaxon (Jax) after her. Sending love to all those who knew her and loved her. She is forever missed xxx

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  7. I often pass by the hospital where Mary her Mom spent her last days and I visited there. She would talk of Jax visiting and how she would soon get out of the hospital to go home which she never did. She hung on to life with a grip as did her daughter. Such a shame they are both gone now and their memories remain vivid in my mind.Two beautiful, vital, fun loving women leave a void in our lives. I am glad I had them in my life however too short. May they rest in peace.

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