Jennifer Ellen Futrell
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FUTRELL, JENNIFER ELLEN, 29, died Saturday, October 4, 2008. She is survived by her mother, Barbara Hedspeth; father, James Futrell; sister, Elizabeth Futrell; stepmother, Katherine Futrell; grandparents, Joyce Pearce, of Poplar Bluff, MO and Faye Futrell and great-grandmother Opal Evitts, both of Paducah, KY. Also surviving are the many, many dear friends in her 'chosen' extended family. An avid musician, writer, chef, bicyclist, activist and organizer in Louisville's vibrant alternative arts community, Jennifer (Jen, to her friends) was a passionate supporter of her city. She talked and walked a unique path through life, touching many and always allowing herself to be changed and nurtured by others. The victim of a tragic accident, her last act of giving, aside from the cherished memories of her brief but significant life, was the gift of life to others through the Kentucky Organ Donor Affiliates program. Visitation will be 4-9 p.m. Monday at the Crescent Hill Presbyterian Church. A service of celebration of her life will be held there as well on Tuesday at 1:30 p.m. Donations in lieu of other expressions of sympathy may be made to Seeds of Peace or Safe Streets Louisville. Rest well, our sweet warrior child. You were and always will be loved and cherished.

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Published in Courier-Journal from Oct. 5 to Oct. 6, 2008.
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39 entries
September 29, 2019
I wanted to share this video of Jen talking about solidarity and mutual aid and love and stuff.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=5bUBlerdkns
Vermin Supreme
Friend
November 21, 2018
Jenny to me was an amazing wonder..... I looked it to her as a very smart girl .... she talked in psychology levels that amazed my mind huge big giant levels ...... I looked up to her so much ..... me and Craig from underground sounds talk about her rememember her miss her Cory stylus too from time and space I remember Sahra mattingly now in Boston ..... and woody key board isn't all genious hit huge levels in the universe true use your brain thinkers I really really looked up to Jenny as one of the smartest kids on the street very mystical magical very pretty girl miss her a lot
Michael Stuart
June 3, 2012
i miss you.
Remedy
March 16, 2009
Jenny was an untamed spirit that made each of us question ourselves. I am so glad that she and I got to spend sometime together as adults when I first moved to Louisville. Her spirit will remain in her absence and her organs will sustain life for another. What an amazing gift.
Melissa Futrell
November 18, 2008
Sounds like she was a great girl!!
My heart goes out for her family.
Ricky Futrell
November 12, 2008
Didn't know her personally, but my heart goes out to anyone who did.
David Kirby
October 13, 2008
I will miss Jen so much. I am very grateful for the wonderful visit we had last time I was in town. Imagine Jen playing skee ball at Gatti Land! What fun we had. I can't believe she is gone but I will keep her in my heart forever. Jen was a true friend and I feel blessed to have been a part of her life.
Melissa Stone
October 9, 2008
Jennifer was a beautiful person. I will always remember her as a poet, a dreamer and a dear friend. I have never met anyone else like her. Her life was a gift to all of us. I am so sorry for the loss so many are going through right now. I am filled with gratitude that our lives touched and that she brought so much joy and love to this world.
Katie Eversole
October 8, 2008
Barbara....when I heard the "news" of the bike accident, and saw the interview on tv with father, Jim, et...I put the two together. Words can not express to you how very sorry and sad I am for your great loss of Jen. I remember when we were at Caratas working and stories you shared, knowing how very much she was loved. I will keep you lifted in my prayers. It seems as though you raised a wonderful girl...so much to be proud of forever. God bless you and my deepest sympathy Barbara. Love, Betty Bastin
Betty Bastin
October 8, 2008
Positive spirit.
Jenn, you were the most positive and optimistic person that I have ever met. You were able to see your friends as whole people, the good and the bad, and love us all the same. Capable of loving us more than we loved ourselves. You showed more faith in humanity than anyone I have ever known. You were a maximum strength muse, the positive light you cast on the world was one that shone into the hearts of your friends and family. true love, real happiness, lasting peace you told us it was all possible if we believed in it. You believed.

Community kitchen pirate- Jenn believed that feeding someone was symbolic for giving them knowledge. Jenn loved to feed others. she wanted to pass on to someone the energy their body would need to make it through the adventure of the day. For their mind to have the strength to make the right choices, she wanted to feed you with knowledge. Jenn wanted to foster a spirit of community and felt the best way to achieve that was to have everyone sit down together and share a meal. She fed our bodies with some amazing food, she nourished our spirit with honesty and love.

Free spirit.
Jenn did some awesome, wild things: She trainhopped, she hitchhiked, she loved, fought, rocked, stared down riot cops, inspired and empowered others. she did what she loved and being herself and doing what she felt was right was the most important thing in her life. She lived life on her own terms and she was happy. it wasn't always perfect but she was able to live her life as free as her heart could be.

From all your friends in this world, human and animal, thank you Jenn for your love.
Stuart Barr
October 7, 2008
Jen Futrell Calico Future

To all friends, family, and those concerned with the passing of a friend,

There is a difference between those who move through our world as an experience, a life to be lived fully, and those who take that full life and expose it further through actions dedicated to change. There is a difference, also, between those in our community who need no encouragement to step into that role of dedicated change, that position of leadership and responsibility, and those who simply remain supportive as a participant. Jen, Calico Future as we have come to know her recently, stands without question in the position of a dedicated organizer, a supporter of good causes, and someone who in our experience never foundered when there was a reason to work, to move forward, to help, or to encourage.
There is something unique in the ability to motivate, to inspire friends, family, and our community. More special yet is when one can do all this with humor, patience, and endless dedication. Through our time together four years ago during a march from Boston to New York, and again these past few months during the PNC2RNC bike ride and in Minneapolis during the RNC, Calico showed herself to be a person possessed of this unique character.
She catalyzed her motivation and enthusiasm for the movement through her cooking, and it was in this vein that our collective came to know and respect her. She believed there was no hostel without a hearth, and thus she sought to bring people together, to support friends, and galvanize unity in the movement through food. This is an ethic our collective shares. We truly feel that our time working together was special, and that Calico will always remain a part of our kitchen.

Jen, we already miss you.

The Seeds of Peace Collective

Grumble
Nick
Sean
Max
Elizabeth
Garth
Garlic
Darla
Emily
Heather
Charles
Seeds of Peace Collective
October 7, 2008
I am sorry for your loss. I was good friends with Jen in high school.. I always loved her creativity. We lost touch a little while after high school and a couple of years ago I came home from work and she was sitting in my front yard and she said to me " Did you ever realize how great of a view you have from right here" And I never had. So went sat and enjoyed the sunset together. She always had the ability to help me appreciate the little things.
Emily Lesousky
October 7, 2008
To Jen's parents:
I'm so sorry for your loss. Jennifer and I were good friends in high school, and even then she lived life by her own rules. She was an amazing person. Jen was a sweet, caring, quirky woman and even in death she is still giving. She will be missed.
Chrissie Gribbons
October 6, 2008
I met Jen my first day at U of L in the Honors program, and we later became roommates for a time. Though she was soon to move on to other pursuits, she influenced me more than anything I learned in school. I last saw her this summer for the first time in the 3 years since I left Louisville at the Terrastock festival and Fort Future, and looking back on it, this was a blessing. She was a brilliant, wise, thoughtful, caring, and joyful person, and the world is a better place for her having lived in it. I'll never forget her.
David Golightly
October 6, 2008
she lives free, this being we've been so blessed to meet
she came from the Future to show us the ways
of sharing a nurturing hug and meal and truth
told bravely with subtle laughing in eye contact
loud wailing in song ever present gifts
of acceptance of diversity of expression
she said hospitality is her manifesto focus
meeting others with nourishment and asking only
that they do no harm in return
forgiveness
lives inherent in the love of her hearth fire
heart's desire like the plant that lives wrapped warm
in the seed, no matter
where in the journey
the shell happens to be, dangling from dying
autumn branch, nestling into the rest of a dark
season offering hospice, or breathing deep down
into the womb of the earth for unveiling
the present
she sees through the growing cycles in limitless vision
intent
in planting and tending
the wild courageous medicinal harvest
of peace

i am thankful for this thing truly in my bones:
Calico is our ancestor.
Thank you Sister Spirit.
Laurel Strand-Crawford
October 6, 2008
to the family, just wanted to say how sorry i am for the loss of your daughter, my heart and a prayer goes out to all of you.
rodney wood
October 6, 2008
Barbara,
Jenny was blessed to have such a wonderful friend in you, her mother. I know you are proud of Jen, your hero. She has blessed the lives of many by being an organ donor as have you and the rest of her family by being so giving of Jen. I am so sad for your loss. I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.
Mary Lynn T.
Mary Lynn
October 6, 2008
I am so sorry to hear about Jennifer's passing. Although I have not seen her in years, I know that the world has lost someone very special. My deepest condolences.
Jessica Mills
October 6, 2008
To the family of Jennifer,
I send my sincerest condolences to you. I can only imagine your pain. My daughter, Jennie and Jennifer were good friends in middle school and spent a lot of time together. My younger daughter, Amy, is also a biker and had some contact with Jennifer in the last few years. They shared a love and appreciation of art. It is obvious that she was a very thoughtful, intelligent, creative, adventuresome person who lived her life her way. I admire that in anyone. May God be with you at this most difficult time and the times to come.
Judy Edelen
October 6, 2008
Two weeks of traveling to the RNC and a week spent at Fort Future with Calico Future was a wonderful and precious experience. I'm happy I met such a wonderful women who was an inspiration to everyone she talked with. She made the most wonderful food, great music and always made me laugh. She will always be in my thoughts. Much love to you Calico.
Skunk Monkey
October 6, 2008
i was lucky to have known jennifer since a young age, and was able to see her grow into an intellectual, caring and spirited individual. she will always be an inspiration to cultivate these qualities in myself and others. thank you Jennifer.
daniel penrod
October 6, 2008
Jen was truly one of the only people I have ever met who lived the way she thought people should live. I remember her being this way in sixth grade and every time I ran into her I was amazed that she continued to live in such a conscientious and peaceful way. I really respected her. I am so sad I will never get to hear her unique take on things again.
Molly Oberhausen
October 6, 2008
What a gift you have given someone, the gift of life. My niece received lungs because of people like your daughter. Your daughter will live on in someone else.
M C
October 6, 2008
Jen, you touched my daughter's life and mine. I am profoundly saddened to hear of your life being cut so senselessly short. These things are hard to understand in the divine unfolding of things and my thoughts are with those you have left behind. I always found you somehow courageous Jen, and I know you would expect the ones you love to find the same quality in themselves now. Goodbye Jen. Love Freya xx
Freya Boyesen
October 6, 2008
Barbara,

I never met Jen, but through our conversations I felt like I knew her well...she reminded me so much of my own sister! Know that you're in our thoughts.
Angela and Marcus Doyle
October 6, 2008
Barbara,

You and I worked together at Our Lady of Peace a "few" year's back, I was so sorry to read about your wonderful daughter and my heart goes out to you. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers, from what I have read about your daughter; her spirit will always be here with those she loved and cared for. In sympathy, Donna B.
Donna Bell
October 6, 2008
Jen was one of the most courageous, selfless, wisest, and closest friends I will ever had. She was irreplaceable, and my life will be forever enriched by all she taught and shown me. I'll miss her terribly, yet I know for a certainty that she would want me to keep doing my part to show the world how bright the future can be.
Mark Peterson
October 6, 2008
Calico cooking with love in Winona, Minnesota
I'll always remember those two weeks with Calico on the Grassroots Bicycle Caravan. Her dog which was as complicated and interesting as she, and her understated humor and wise observations. I probably will never eat so well on a bike ride before or since. You can't imagine what it was like to be met by a really special meal at the end of a ride, not just one meal but three times a day for two weeks. There is going to be a big hole in the lives of many people, not just the ones she knew but the ones that she was reaching out to touch with her kitchen who will now never get the chance to be blessed with meeting her or being nourished by her. She cared for the earth, she cared for bicyclists, she cared for her dog, she cared for those she met. Calico, we were inspired by you and we will miss you!
Stephen Mikesell
October 5, 2008
I never had the chance to meet jennifer however I would have loved to have met her she seems to be a wonderful person,I am sure the Lord welcomed her with open arms,and she is continuing to watch over you from heaven. May God bless your family always.
yolanda young
October 5, 2008
First, let me say that I am sorry for your loss. I would like to applaud you for the decision you made to donate organs. I lost my husband suddenly 2 years ago-- he was also a cyclist. I made the decision to donate organs as well. My husband saved the lives of 3 people and restored the sight to two. Thank you for making the decision you made and allowing Jennifer to help others.
CKG
October 5, 2008
Please accept my heartfelt condolences for the sudden loss of your obviously very special loved one. As an organ recipient, I can wholeheartedly assure you that a beautiful, compassionate and enlightened spirit such as Jennifer - obviously an angel in the truest sense of the word - will always be held in the highest esteem, forever cherished and 'never' forgotten by each of those who receive a second chance by virtue of her, and your, selfless gifts. Were it under their control, all would sincerely prefer that she still be physically with you. That not being the case, they - we - can only humbly, gratefully and most respectfully say "Thank you". May comfort, rest and peace be yours.
Bless You
October 5, 2008
I have never met Jennifer, but i am inspired by her. I saw a You Tube video of her and she seemed really interesting. My thoughts are with her family and friends.
perrie spaulding-Allen
October 5, 2008
Ms. Barbara,
I am so sorry to hear of the loss of your precious daughter. One life that was taken way too soon. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family through this rough time.
Mandy Bunch
October 5, 2008
Barbara and the rest of Jennifer's family, I am so sorry for your loss. Barbara, I can see your influence in the way Jennifer lived so environmentally consciously. Though I only met her a few times, I know the world is not as bright with her not in it. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.
Elizabeth Glass
October 5, 2008
I wanted to include this link to the Seeds of Peace Collective. The one with which Jen was connected.(There are a couple groups with that name)
http://www.seeds-of-peace-collective.org/
It seems like only a few weeks ago, that we were snapping greenbeans together in the seeds of peace kitchen at the RNC, in st,paul. It was only a few weeks ago. Jen ,(calico), was a rock star.She will be missed.
with love and sorrow, becky and vermin
vermin supreme
October 5, 2008
Our sorrow is for your loss. We always feel we should outlive our children and it is so hard when we don't. Please know that God is with you and will always be there for you.

We are family even if we never spent much time together and if we can do anything for you please let us know.
Betty Rose (Wicker) & Paul Johnson
October 5, 2008
I sincerely am sorry for your loss, it was a senseless and avoidiable accident that took her life, please know that she will be missed very very much.
Dave G.
October 5, 2008
I never met Ms Futrell, but any cyclist is a friend of mine. Rest well. your friends and family will never forget you.
Tom Armstrong
October 5, 2008
My heart goes out to you and your family. Thank you for allowing others to have life in the wake of this tragedy. What a blessing you gave to others through your donation. That is an inspiration to young people like myself. God bless.
Mary Beth
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