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Jillian Costello

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Jillian Costello Obituary
Jillian Costello Born December 1, 1987, a Christmas angel for her loving parents, Mary and Jim Costello, and big brothers, James and Kevin, Jillian returned to the loving arms of Jesus and the Blessed Lady on June 24, 2010. She is the beloved granddaughter of Helen Weinkauf. Jill was extremely grateful for the loving and devoted care of her very special Auntie Kathy, Uncle Mark and Morello cousins, Jessica, Mike and John. Jill is the cherished niece of Diane and Mark Germenis, and George, Steven, Greg and Diane Weinkauf; and beloved cousin of Brian and Julie Germenis; Gregory, Stella, Connie and Angela Weinkauf; and Matt Costello. She is survived by the love of her life, Bryce Atkinson, and her devoted lifelong friend, Liz Button. She loved and was loved by numerous friends who enriched her life immeasurably and supported her amazingly as she faced her greatest challenge this past year. A 7th generation San Franciscan, Jill is a proud graduate of St. Brendan School, St. Ignatius College Preparatory and UC Berkeley, where she became a Kappa Kappa Gamma sister. Undeterred by incredible medical demands, Jill graduated from Cal in May, and was coxswain for the Cal Crew Varsity 8, winning the gold at the Pac10 and silver at the NCAA National Championship. Named a Cal Athletic Scholar, Jill received the Joseph M. Kavanaugh Award, presented to the most courageous and inspirational athlete; and the Women's Crew Bettina Bents award for loyalty, proficiency and spirit. Jill was awarded the Pac10 Conference Women's Rowing Athlete of the Year, and named to the Pac10 All-Academic second team. Jill motivated her Cal team with her fight and determination so much that they raced at the Cal-Stanford "Big Row" and the NCAA Championship as "Team Jill". Diagnosed with lung cancer last June, Jill chose to spend her last year living fully, completely, and joyfully. She was an inspiration as she met her challenge with courage, faith and determination. Despite the hardships she faced, Jill taught us to embrace the joy of each day and to celebrate it, so we invite you to wear your favorite color to her services as we celebrate the life of Jill. Jill was extremely grateful to her Team Jill for their complete and loving support, as well as, her KKG sisters, who always held her in their loving arms. Upon graduation, Jill was proud to accept the position of Director of Public Awareness for the Bonnie J. Addario Lung Cancer Foundation. Jill faced cancer as a brave and courageous warrior. But even the greatest warrior finally lays down her weapons. Jillian shared her journey through her CaringBridge journal, and personal messages may be left there: http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/jillcostello Friends may visit after 5:00pm on Tuesday, June 29th and are invited at 7pm to attend A "Celebration of Jill" which will begin with a Rosary at St. Ignatius Church (Parker and Fulton St) and continue with a Funeral Mass there on Wed, June 30, at 1:30pm. Parking available at the Koret Center (Turk and Parker). A reception will follow the mass. In lieu of flowers, Jill's family requests support to the "Jill Costello Scholarship" at St. Ignatius College Preparatory, or her passion, "Team Jill" at the Bonnie J. Addario Lung Cancer Foundation, and invites everyone to the "Jog for Jill" on Sept 12 for lung cancer research.
Published in San Francisco Chronicle from June 27 to June 29, 2010
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