As I’m sure you all know by now, our quick-witted blogger and my husband, Jason Beaird, passed away on March 14, 2013. His cancer had been worsening as of late, but his passing was quick and unexpected. He fought hard to the very end. We are all heartbroken, but know that he is now in a better place. His passing was peaceful, surrounded by those he loved most.
A loving tribute was held on March 19 at Degusipe Funeral Home, followed by a beautiful Funeral Mass on March 20 at St. James Catholic Cathedral. Jason touched many lives in the too-short time he was with us and both services were overflowing with attendees. We thank all of those who were able to attend and those who sent blessings from afar.
At the request of many of Jason's friends, we have set up a Memorial Fund to support many of the passions that Jason held near and dear to his heart. The website for this Memorial Fund is: http://www.youcaring.com/other/jason-beaird-memorial-fund/50059 and we have collected over $3,000 to date. Thank you so much for your generosity.
Please know how much all of your prayers, support, and love mean to us. We feel blessed to have so many wonderful people supporting us. Please remember to spend time with your family and count your blessings daily. Love – Jennifer, Aaron and Shannon
The following was obituary was posted on the Degusipe Funeral Home website at http://www.degusipefuneralhome.com/obituaries/Jason-Beaird/#/ :
Jason is survived by his wife, Jennifer; two children, Aaron, 10, and Shannon, 7; mother and stepfather, Jeanne and Rich Terio of New Port Richey; father and stepmother, Jim R. Beaird and Kathy Vawter-Beaird of Palm Harbor; paternal grandmother, Avril Beaird of Palm Harbor; brothers, Jim P. Beaird of Orlando, Rick W. Terio of Bushnell, Matthew Vawter of Denver, Colorado, and Andrew Vawter-Beaird of Clearwater; and sisters, Holly Saia of Lutz, and Jean Neumann of Houston, Texas. He was predeceased by his brother, Patrick Vawter-Beaird of Palm Harbor. Jason is also survived by a large, loving extended family that includes many aunts, uncles, cousins and godchildren.
Jason grew up in Pinellas County. Upon graduation from Clearwater High School in 1988 he attended the University of Florida where he played baseball for the Gators and was selected for the All SEC Academic Team. At UF, Jason met many people who would become life-long friends, as well as his future wife, Jennifer Lynne Brown of Tampa. Jason attained his Master’s in Accounting in 1993 and, after graduation, moved to Orlando and began working for KPMG as a Certified Public Accountant. On December 9, 1995, Jason and Jennifer married at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Tampa, Florida. Jason progressed in his professional career and in 1997 he began working at Marriott Vacation Club International (currently, Marriott Vacations Worldwide (MVW)) as a financial analyst. He worked at MVW for ten years, seven of which he was joined by his brother, Jim. Jason finished his career by joining Hilton Grand Vacations in 2008 as Vice President of Strategic Planning and Analysis. He enjoyed working there and was known to check emails, edit presentations, review legal documents, etc. even from his hospital bed.
In 2002, Jason and Jennifer welcomed their first child, son Aaron Joseph, and shortly thereafter, accepted an expatriate assignment with MVW in Cork, Ireland. They spent a wonderful two years in Ireland - traveling around Europe and Asia and made many special memories with the numerous friends and families who visited them. One of Jason's fondest memories was watching the Tour de France in a small village in Provence and running into a former University of Florida Gator baseball player. It was just after returning to Orlando, in 2005, that their family was completed with the birth of their daughter, Shannon Elizabeth.
From childhood on, Jason had always been an avid athlete and he continued to enjoy competition through the sport and social clubs in Orlando, work softball teams and even some time in an adult baseball league. In addition, he began training and competing in triathlons, the culmination of which was his completion of an Ironman Triathlon in November 1999. His passion for triathlons was lit and he continued competing in them even after diagnosed with cancer. In fact his diagnosis, this helped fuel his passion and he began competing in triathlons to raise money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation - earning multiple fundraising awards.
Baseball continued to be another passion of Jason's and he began coaching Aaron's baseball teams at Delaney Park Little League (DPLL). He coached at DPLL from 2008 forward - encompassing numerous Rookies and Minor League teams, winning the Minor Division Championship with the Dodgers in 2012. Jason carried his coaching expertise into St. James Cathedral School and helped coach Aaron's Catholic Youth League (CYL) football and basketball teams - winning the CYL 3rd grade basketball championship and the 4th grade football championship. Some of his most cherished friends were fellow coaches and teammate parents.
As a part of Gator Nation, the Beaird family attended many University of Florida Gator football games - both at home games in Gainesville and on the road. Many fun memories were made during road trips to Tennessee, Kentucky, Jacksonville and, of course, New Orleans - one highlight was attending the Gators First National Championship. The Beaird family also attended Gator baseball games and Jason relived fond baseball memories with many of his teammates by participating in the Gator Baseball Alumni vs. Current Team baseball games.
Jason has been a lifelong Catholic and a parishioner of St. James Catholic Cathedral since moving to Orlando in 1993. His family are regular attendees at the 9AM Sunday Mass and both children attend St. James Cathedral School. The family has developed many close relationships through the Cathedral and the School and have continued to receive many blessings and support from this wonderful community.