Jake Betz: The News is Sad

According to an entry at Jake Betz’s Caring Bridge page, written by friend and benefactor Pat Fallon:

Jake is bravely and stubbornly fighting a fight he can’t win. No one could.  The damage to his brain is profound and irreversible.

Today at 10 a.m. Jake’s family will be met with the medical staff at
HCMC to move forward and take him off all life support systems. And,
because he had previously expressed his wishes to be an organ donor, these decisions were made at the same time.

What I can tell you with certainty is that he loved being a boxer—every part of it; the rigorous training, the guys, the sounds, the smells, the rituals, the history, the outlet for blowing off steam and aggression.  Respected both the sport and those who had the balls to step in the ring  and let it fly. Jake dreamed about being a fighter—he saw himself being picked up, carried around the ring, and getting his belt. In the last few years he has lived his love of fighting. He lived a life we should all aspire to follow.

Thankfully, Jake’s wife, Heather, and his parents, Don and Joanie, as well as his 2 younger brothers, Chris and Dan, understand his commitment to boxing. They are deeply, deeply saddened, but they’re not bitter and they believe the friends he made in boxing need to continue fighting in order to honor Jake’s memory. And in that sense I ask you to not spend time second guessing what many will see as the senselessness of Jake’s fatal injury, but rather to accept the way he chose to live his life and celebrate this big, kind, tattooed, bear of a man that enriched the lives of all he touched.

Jake has an amazing family. People of substance, strength, and character. I have been inspired by their wisdom, their strength, their love for and pride in their oldest son, Jake. Our Jake. Their Jake. The stories are many and only a few involving jail time. But, like Oscar Wilde, they subscribe to the theory that the best stories are the ones that can’t be told.

Know this, they need our prayers and our positive vibes at 10 a.m. tomorrow as they face up to these unthinkable decisions. Know this too: Jake loved his 8 years at Fallon and he often commented about us being his “second family.” He wore our brand with pride. Finally, be certain that some lucky person in need is going to get a huge, gigoondous heart–one capable of love and compassion that knows no bounds.

I will end by telling you my association with Jake has been a privilege and a joy. I saw a 320 lb guy without discipline and sometimes without goals turn into a 235 lb man with incredible discipline and very specific goals that he relentlessly went after until, inexplicably, there was nothing left. Godspeed, Jake.

we are fallon

Pat Fallon

This is no longer the most recent journal entry, so please do follow this link for more detailed news: http://www.caringbridge.org/cb/viewJournal.do?method=executeInit

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