It is with deep sorrow and much love that we mourn the death of our son, brother, grandson, nephew, godson and cousin, Jens. He was a force to be reckoned with. Having his first seizure at 18 months, continuing to have status epilepticus and undergoing surgeries, Jens completely confounded both the Toronto and the global medical communities.
Jens never fit the textbook definition of a child with Rasmussen’s. He shouldn’t be walking – but he’s ice skating and bicycling! He shouldn’t be talking – but he creates puns of the worst “punishment”. Can’t drive a car – okay, there are buses, trains, planes and ziplining. He shouldn’t be learning – well learn he did.
Jens graduated from Central Etobicoke High School, winning the Governor General’s Award and being the Valedictorian for his graduating class of 2013. Not satisfied with just this achievement, Jens went on to study at George Brown College.
Never once did he let this wretched disease control or define his life. Jens never saw himself as disabled and when the term “neuro-diverse” began to be used in common language we all rejoiced. Jens’s diversity is what made him who he was. Jens was strong, brave, funny, courageous, and determined.
At 26 he moved into his condo and started living a fully independent life. Jens worked with some amazing organizations and individuals, including his six years with Good Foot. Jens gave back to the community in many ways from volunteering in the library to his participation in the ASK Men’s Cooking Group. Jens loved to travel and experienced sights and sounds on three continents. He lived his life on his own terms. Jens may only have had 28 years on this earth, but they were jam-packed with love and adventure. Jens will truly be missed.
In lieu of flowers, donations to Good Foot Support Services (https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/good-foot-support-services/)
or Hospital for Sick Children would be appreciated.