I met Jen when I started going to Styx and Dennis DeYoung concerts. Seeing these bands six or seven times a year, these concerts start to hold an appeal that reaches beyond the music. It has become a time to visit with an extended family of concert-going regulars.
We share stories of life experiences, musical tastes, aches and pains of our aging bodies; and many times we do it all over a group dinner before or after a show.
Jen was often the life of the party. A big, bold person with a huge, hearty smile. Intelligent professional nurse by day, crazy rocker chick around the clock. She enjoyed painting sessions at Pinot’s Palette, she went nuts for a pair of animal skin pumps, and she loved music, particularly Styx music.
On February 10, my friend Jennifer’s heart stopped beating.
Just before leaving for the Dennis DeYoung concert this past February 11, as I was checking my Facebook page to make sure all of my concert-going family were going to be there, I saw post after post about Jen’s passing. I knew this concert was going to be a bit more difficult than the rest. When the Styx classic “Suite Madame Blue” was dedicated to Jen from the stage, it became an emotional performance that will live with me forever.
Even though my Styx family chain has lost a link and gotten smaller, our link to each other feels stronger than ever. A mutual love of music brought Jen into my life, and I feel thankful and privileged to have known her and called her “friend.”