Wednesday, December 14, 2011

A Special Day

Today is very special because it's a day when you have an opportunity to remember Jamin (JB). It was 5 years ago today, December 14, 2006, that Jamin died in a tragic car accident in Germany.

Each person who knew Jamin has special and unique memories of him. If I may, I'd urge you to step aside from the day-to-day hustle for a brief moment and recollect the memories you have. Enjoy a few smiles and happy thoughts. Did his life impact you in any way? Is there anything to be learned from his life that may make our lives and our world a bit better?

As with all human beings, he was certainly not perfect, but he was very special. If you'll indulge me, I'd like to put down a few of my remembrances. Perhaps they will help to reawaken your memories in one way or another --

I remember Jamin as one of the most nonjudgmental people (Sadly, not learned from me) I've ever known.  He purposely resisted talking badly about others and he delighted in befriending anyone who crossed his path. I was always surprised by the wide variation in personalities, nationalities, and economic status of people who he considered to be his friends -- and he had many. He honestly cared about each person and they sensed this when they were around him. Next to his picture in my wallet I have a short poem that exemplifies Jamin's approach to friendship. It reads: "I went outside to find a friend, but could no find one there; I went outside to be a friend, and friends were everywhere!"

I was always amazed that in spite of Jamin's keen intellect (He scored a perfect Verbal SAT score and a near perfect Math score) and his many accomplishments and awards (D'Evelyn High School, Harvard, Air Force), he remained a genuinely humble person. I remember his exuberance for life, the way he packed each day to overflowing, and how he attacked problems with confidence and humor. His broad smile and enthusiasm seemed contagious. My remembrance of Jamin is that he had the ability to become enthused and animated over the mundane things of life - a meal, an object, a scene. He was wise beyond his years in the way that he listened to, and often accepted, my advice. Yet, he rightfully also questioned my thoughts or beliefs and reasoned his way to his own set of strongly held tenets. He loved to argue any point, but didn't seem to let it impact friendship. Most of all, I remember Jamin's unwavering honesty, which underpinned his character. He was never afraid to let others know where he stood.

You have your own thoughts and memories of Jamin. Enjoy them.

Perhaps the best way to close this note is to leave you with a couple choice thoughts that Jamin left behind. You've most likely heard them previously, but to help refresh your memory, here they are again --

"So it’s all hands on deck; let’s unfurl the sails and follow the sun to the horizon fully enjoying this adventure that is life." 
The last entry in Jamin's hand written journal.

"Live. Be. Do. Act. Enjoy." 
Contained on a single sheet, these were the hand written action verbs by which Jamin tried to live his life.

So ...... make the most of your day and enjoy it to the fullest; oh yeah, and let others know you care about them -- that's what Jamin did.

Warmest greetings,

Friday, August 7, 2009

The Jamin Fund: School Building at Pimbiniet from Parker Wilson on Vimeo.

A short documentary following the Wilson family and their trip to Kenya to help with the construction of a primary school for the Jamin Fund.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Memories of an Air Force friend

I ... remember the wonderful person he was. From Lt. Wilson I learned many things, but the most important, I think, are Integrity and Happiness. Lt. Wilson didn't just talk about Integrity he personified it. About Happiness he taught me that one has a choice, to view life's challenges in a positive light or to mope about through ones existence. Because I had the opportunity to meet and work with Lt. Wilson, the way I view life has been irrevocably changed. There is not a day that goes by that I do not think about and remember Lt. Wilson. His spirit lives on because, I, and many others remember him and try to carry his spirit with us.

These remembrances were penned by Samantha "Sam" Adams, who served at Spangdahlem Air Force Base with Jamin.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Happy Birthday Jamin

"Know ye herewith that the International Star Registry doth hereby re-designate star number Capricornus RA 20h 16m 54s D-25. 55' to the name Lt. Jamin Buchanan Wilson. Know ye further that this star will henceforth be known by this name."
These are the words we read Christmas morning, as the gift of this beautiful tribute was made from Brynna to us, to honor her oldest brother. And so when you look to the heavens, on a night when the sky is dark and the stars are bright, you might just be looking at a star named "Jamin".
We already have the hope of seeing our own Jamin again in Heaven...but for now it's fun to know we can see Jamin's star in the heavens!
"I say emphatically that anyone who listens to my message and believes in God who sent me has eternal life, and will never be damned for his sins, but has already passed out of death into life. ...Don't be so surprised! Indeed the time is coming when all the dead in their graves shall hear the voice of God's Son and shall rise again--those who have done good (through faith in Christ), to eternal life; and those who have continued in evil, to judgement." John 5:24, 28 & 29. (TLB)

Friday, November 16, 2007


It was in late October, of '01 that we received the following e-mail from Jamin--a real classic. I had the opportunity to re-read it the other day, and thought I would share some excerpts...

"So, the past few weeks here have been "Wow, I'm at Harvard" weeks. I think it all began when I was sitting there in my Physics class, just listening or doodling or whatever I usually do, and my teacher was talking about the elemental forces in the universe (electromagnetic, nuclear weak, nuclear strong, and gravitational, if you were interested) and how many of them are caused by relationships between quarks (which are sub-particles of atoms). So I was kind of like, "hmm, that's cool." Then she started to tell us about the quarks, and it went something like this:

"There are three pairs of quarks.
Up, down.
Strange, charm.
Top, bottom.
I found this one..."
(as she points at Top quark)

So I was just sitting there, waiting for her to finish her sentence, because she has this habit of pausing in her sentences from time to time, as many of us do... You know, perhaps, "I found this one... particularly cool," or "I found this one... to be the most interesting," or something along those lines. But that was it. That was the end of the sentence. She found the top quark. Wow. I'm at Harvard.

Hmm, so since that wasn't enough, I went to see the installation of President Summers (the new president of Harvard) this past weekend. Oh man, did they have the yard decked out. Chairs, banners, stage, speakers, big tent over the stage... It was very cool. But then the ceremony started, and that was even better. The band played, and the choir sang, and the band played some more, and then all the important people started filing in. There were a lot of important people. And they came in with other, less important, people carrying little signs in front of them, so that everyone could tell who they were. My favorite part was seeing all the delegates that came from other universities all over the world, because they had these totally crazy outfits. Oh, but the very best part was when the President of Yale University got up to give a welcome on behalf of the delegates, and he told us this story about how all these other people from Yale who had spoken here had avoided conceding that Harvard was the better university. But the best part was when he admitted that we really were the best. I was like, Wow. I'm at Harvard.

Then I was sitting in the dining hall the other day, and I realized that I was eating fish for the second time in one day, and that I actually liked the stuff now. And it was sort of like, Wow, I'm at Harvard.

And then there was this other time I was sitting in the Dining Hall (it's a pretty great place to sit, you see), and I got to talking with the guy across from me about worker's wages, which turned into a discussion af absolute morality and the nature of truth and the possibility of the existence of truth and other such topics of light conversation, and I was thinking, Wow. I'm at Harvard.

Then, this other time, I went to a celebration for the 100th anniversary of one of the buildings in Adams House, and this guy told us about all the famous people who have lived here, like Franklin D. Roosevelt and such, and there were pastries and champagne and Earl Gray tea, and everyone was standing around socializing in the masters' house, which has been perfectly restored to its 17th Century style, and eating chocolate fondue and sipping their tea and listening to a trio playing classical music in the music room, and I was sort of thinking -- you know -- Wow. I'm at Harvard.

Oh, yes. Then there was this other time... I was sitting at my desk this past week, reading like mad and working on a problem set for one of my classes, which was after I had spent the previous weekend working on a briefing for ROTC, having just finished a paper for English, studying for an Economics test, trying to come up with some intelligent question to ask in my English section and a topic for the paper that I now have to write for my History and Literature tutorial, and being thankful that my TF had moved one of my problem sets' due date to next week because I knew that there was no way I could possibly finish it this week... and I fell asleep at my desk. No! Not that! Yes. That. Because, after all... Wow. I'm at Harvard."

I can hear Jamin perfectly as I read this...the way he talked really fast when he was excited. And I can't help but think about who he was, and what he was--brilliance, wrapped up in bright cotton candy. Not pink though-green.

Share Your Memories

This site has been created for friends, family, and co-workers of Jamin Wilson to share their memories, photos, and videos of this incredible man. Feel free to comment on any posts that have already been created. However, if you would like to be added as a contributor to this blog please send me an email at Please include your name and your relationship to Jamin so that I can add you to the list. This will allow you to upload text, photos, or videos whenever a memory comes to mind.