I loved you the minute I knew I was pregnant. I loved you the minute you were born. Then I saw your face and fell in love some more. You were only a minute old but I knew I would die for you & to this day I still would. When you choose to have a child you make a conscious decision to allow your heart to walk around outside your body. Then if something happens to that child and you have to bury him a part of you dies with him

Jake was my youngest son who was killed on June 17, 2010. He was 40 years old but still "my baby". Left to tell his story are Mollye and Mike, Jake's mom and step-father; Skip and Jill, his dad and step-mother; his two sisters Lori and Shari, and his brother Buddy.

I hope you will get to know Jake as a person and what an awesome person he was. My wish is that you might leave here feeling just a bit more blessed from reading our memories of Jake our son, our brother and our friend.

The purpose aside from paying tribute to Jake is to honor those who were a part of Jake's life. Friends he loved and friends who loved him and who loved us through our heartbreak. I especially acknowledge in love Jake's Home Depot Family.

Thank You For Visiting Jake's Story and God Bless You, mizmollye

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


It seems to be hard to find someone today with long time employment at the same job. I've always had the tendancy to work somewhere for a period of time and when tired of the hum drum routine, or maybe tired of my boss, or in many cases my boss had grown tired of me!!! or whatever the reason, it was time for me to move on and find another job. There was just always a seemingly good reason why I needed to leave one job for another.

I had a son who felt differently. He was my youngest, my baby, the least of us. He had a GED which he was very proud of. He also had worked hard to obtain his Horticulturist Certification and license. Double proud of that!

Jake knew how to stick with something. He was hired over a decade ago to help set up and open the first Home Depot Store in our area. He didn't have a clue how long he might be there but was proud as punch and excited to be in on the ground floor of such an awesome company. I remember the first orange apron he brought home. You'd have thought it was ties and tails fit for the White House. Jake cherished his apron. He thought it was cool to be awarded the company merit badges and loved lining his apron with them. Badges and patches. Also you could write with Sharpie markers little motivational slogans on your apron and he did that and wrote his name JAKE in big letters with his marker.

After the store opened he started in the garden center. He worked there several years and developed many friendships that stood the test of time with co-workers and vendors. And especially with his customers. Many of them later called upon him to come to their homes and cut their grass or build a flower bed and rake leaves in the fall. He did this on weekends and was always conscientious of not letting side work interfere with his main job with Home Depot.

He later was trained to operate the fork lift and got to work in other areas of the store such as lumber and flooring. Later on he was moved to the Pro Desk and one of his daily tasks was to make coffee take charge of cleaning the coffee pot and always having supplies on hand. He too worked the lot and loaded trucks with lumber and other heavy purchases for builders and contractors. He was responsible for bringing in the buggies and keeping the lot clean.

He got to help outside with the Christmas trees sales and with the chain saw helped trim and load them and he got a lot of pleasure from this.

Jake was discouraged and saddened that he had been passed over so many times to become a department head. I always tried to encourage him saying I felt that one day he would be a department head but that it was just not the right time. He never became bitter but kept on working and doing each task to the best of his ability. He just loved working for Home Depot. He loved so many he worked with.

He had a 401K savings plan which helped him buy his mobile home and other things which made him happy but I don't recall ever hearing him boast of things like that.

During his early days at The Home Depot he became a racing fan and of course that meant he was a huge Tony Stewart supporter. He and his wife Anna got to go watch him drive several times and it was nice for his family because we never had any problem with finding something to buy for Jake for Christmas or his birthday because the Tony Stewart merchandise was never ending.

He amassed quite a collection and when he first bought his little home and invited me to come see it after his decorating was done, I opened the door and was nearly blinded by ORANGE. Well Jake just got the biggest kick out of all the orange, the Home Depot and the Tony Stewart.

He kept it all around his house until he began seeing a young lady and he thought he might just look a little childish or that his place might look a wee bit "batchelorish" to her that he decided to pack up much of his collection and let her have her hand at decorating and he also liked the new look as you can see here and felt more grown up indeed.

He was married much of the time he was employed at Home Depot and he and his wife enjoyed the parties and made friends they saw outside of work. He and his wife divorced about four years ago, but remained friends.

About three years ago Jake felt he was having a problem with alcohol and he went to his supervisor who led him into a substance abuse program and with much humility and gratitude Jake was able with God's help to overcome his desire to drink and was coming up on three years of continued sobriety. I think this heightened his respect for "his company" and theirs for him.

Two things Jake always wanted was to become a Daddy and to be Self Employed. He never had children but dated a couple of very nice women who had children and he thought so much of them. He was a terrific uncle to many and I will be writing soon about the impact Jake had on his nieces and nephews.

He left The Home Depot for a few months to start his own landscaping business and saw that the challenges were too great. You see to make a success of your own business you must make a profit and Jake had a terrible time in charging his customers. He seemed to be just as happy with a sandwich and a glass of tea and of course the opportunity to share scripture with them.

He just could not get the concept of how to charge and many times made barely enough to cover what he had paid for the plants to put in someone's flower bed. So he abandoned the dream of self employment and he was hired back to work with the Merchandising Team of Home Depot. He worked with a great bunch of folks there and loved each and every one of them. How in awe Jake would be to know that because he had not been back long enough for his life insurance to be in effect that his family was reimbursed all of his funeral expenses from the goodness of a non-profit charity of this wonderful company called The Homer Fund. I think he knows.

Many of his co-workers signed this brand new orange apron and presented it to Jake's family before his funeral.

The church was full of friends he had worked for, with and had gotten to know as customers. Many, many eulogies were given and people told of how their lives were changed as a result of knowing my son. Many told of their relationship with Jesus Christ as a result of Jake's witness. How proud we were.

Jake's family is broken up and broken hearted with his passing. He is missed at The Home Depot, at his church and in the hearts of all who had the pleasure of knowing him. We know he is with Jesus. We know he knows no sadness. Our grief simply comes from our knowing we won't be seeing him in this life and seeing that great smile of his. But we will go on and we will be a little better of a person because we knew Jake.

TODAY'S LESSON FROM JAKE: The grass is not always greener on the other side. Loyalty is hard to come by but so richly rewarding. No job should be beneath us; if it needs doing just do it. And last but not least, a full day's work for a full day's pay. Honor and integrity is something money cannot buy. So many lessons from someone so much younger and believing even the smallest, the youngest can lead and can teach.


  1. Thank you for posting this momma. Such a beautiful and true account of such a simply beautiful man. I am so proud to have a brother like this - and a mother like you too ! I think that so many of his friends at Home Depot will read this in time ; and that through this blog they (and we) will continue to learn so many basic life lessons that Jake mastered at such a young age.
    I love you mother; and I love Home Depot too !

  2. Oh what a sweet and talented, Godly man! I enjoyed getting to know Jake and happy that he enjoyed his life, although way too short. He is handsome and sweet! I am sorry for your broken hearts! BIG HUGS!

  3. Oh Mollye Sweetie...
    What a beautiful heart loving post today. I just love this new blog for Jake and your hearts. I feel as tho I have known him for many years, when in fact I have only met Jake through your writes. He was a beautiful man, with a beautiful heart and you can see how much he loved life.

    I love the photo of him trimming the trees for the Christmas holiday. What a giving spirit he had.

    The apron given to you was the perfect gift from the Home Depot family. Especially knowing how much his apron meant to Jake.

    He lives through your memories sweet Mollye. I look forward to many more heart felt stories. Thank you for sharing Jake with me today.

    Country hugs and much love, Sherry

  4. I feel for you. I too lost a son but not to physical death, but to sin. He knew the Lord and sin crept in and he committed adultry.

  5. I am going to enjoy getting to know the person Jake was. Mollye this blog will bring you comfort. It will be good therapy and we will all win by knowing the kind boy you raised to be a wonderful loving man. Thank you for sharing Jake. Anne

  6. Such a loyal, faithfully dedicated soul.


We are so honored when you take time to comment on something Jake said, did or stood for. Thank You!