What made Jeremy Wainland tick? I wish I had spent more time with him to find the answer to that question.
Jeremy’s sister had a great idea which she mentioned during Jeremy's funeral – and I am taking her advice and writing down many random thoughts and memories that dear Jeremy has filled my head with.
I first met Jeremy way back during high school in the late 80s. I got to really know Jeremy during Boy Scouts. He was, in my mind at the time, a really loud person who always charged forward with his debate “lifestyle”. Jeremy took it to extremes, always letting you know why and how he was right and you were wrong. I was not such a big social person in high school, and did not participate in debate, but was in band instead – which Jeremy loved to make fun of. Our circles in life were not quite close at that point in life, but I was always aware of this guy who was really open about every subject imaginable (and sometimes unimaginable), kind of rude sometimes, and very loud.
As I mentioned, Boys Scouts is where our circles in life came closer. He sometimes got this really serious look in his face, kind of tightening his lips to show that he meant it. He held various leadership positions over the troop, and would get very upset if people did not listen. His speeches were a combination of yelling at you, but also patiently explaining how it should be and why.
He called me Mr. Gonzalez…always drawing out the “a”..perhaps it had something to do with his New York roots. Now that he has passed on, I’ve been hearing a lot more Billy Joel music. Not by choice, but by chance. Something that broke my heart even more was this morning on the radio during the ride into work, having the song “only the good die young” come on. Jeremy was so good – so clear and direct, so smart, so alive, so full of energy, so full of wisdom. I believe this song now more than ever.
Any recent phone conversation would turn into a business / life lesson of some sort. With his new Peru project, he asked for me to think of anyone in my family in Latin America who could work with his company. I think that was part of Jeremy’s core in being successful. As a friend, he was still able to naturally bring business into the picture. He was such a great person, always moving forward in business without hurting a friendship. Jeremy also mentioned about taking natural products for getting healthy. I mentioned how I had high cholesterol, and was about to start taking a medication called Lipitor. He told me he would be trying out a natural method himself, based on a friend of his who knew about natural healthy solutions. If it worked for him, he would let me know more so I could try it. I thought it was very nice and thoughtful of Jeremy to try something himself first before giving me a chance to try it.
The last time I saw Jeremy was when he came to West Boca Medical in late March to visit us because my wife Laura had just given birth to our first baby daughter Gabriella. It was really really really nice of Jeremy to think of us and stop by for a visit. He took pride in showing us the recent pictures of Skylar. The pictures were very very cute. Jeremy had to leave and left his cel-phone behind. I don’t remember, but I know we spoke to someone via the cel-phone, to let him know that he had left it in the room.
Pausing and looking back on this letter, it does not do a good job of covering all that Jeremy did with me, and how he impacted my life. These are only a few tiny bits and pieces that are coming to mind during this sad time in my life. It is so hard to believe that he is not here, physically anymore. No matter how much I write, I could not properly represent all that Jeremy was in my life. What an unexpected thing to happen. I miss Jeremy and can’t believe I won’t be hearing him call me Mr Gonzalez any time soon.
As Jeremy’s sister said, we should weave our thoughts together and keep Jeremy’s life alive. That is the purpose of this letter. He is an unforgettable human being. I will be praying for his soul and will be praying for his family and friends. I am very lucky to have known him, and to have gotten to spend some time with someone who was always full of energy and wisdom. I look forward to the day when I get to ask him for the answer to the question that will always be in my mind during my time here on earth…Jeremy, what makes you tick?
Dear Wainland Family,
I was very shocked and saddened to hear about the untimely passing of Jeremy. In case you don't remember me, I am the Scoutmaster who took Jeremy to Camp Kunatah, on Chappy Hill. Of more recent times, the fellows from Chappy were regularly e-mailing each other with thoughts, memories, and good old making fun of each other. I am happy to say, Jeremy was amongst our Chappy e-mail group and his input was always anticipated and welcome.
Jeremy was a lot of fun, a very adventurous young man, with a thrift for life and a good time. He was a good friend to those who knew him, and a pleasure to have around camp. He prided himself on his knowledge and skills (like his ability to play ball - he loved being on the Chappy team).
Thirty years old is much to young to die. But let us be thankful for knowing him, and let us keep him alive in our memories. Speak of him, refer to him, and enjoy his daughter; in this way he will live on.
Again, for heartfelt condolences on your most tragic loss.
With a heavy heart,
I recently lost my father or I would have written sooner, my name is Allison and I was close to Jeremy and Kira so close that I was chosen by them to be Skylar's godmother. Jeremy will be missed very much by so many becuse he touched so many lives, I remember when I first met him Kira introduced him to me we immediately had a connection, we weathered good times and bad but through it all different crowds we still remained friends... And thru Jeremy I met two wonderful people his parents . I love you Jeremy and will always remember you
A gorgeous baby picture of Jeremy (thanks to Jamie for sending this gem)
Jeremy and Kira, looking beautiful
a picture of Kira and Skylar
My name is Peter Falk, Jeremy's older cousin. Aside from Jeremy's obvious attributes caring, selflessness, intelligence, and a great sense of humor, I want people to know how he most recently touched my life.
Not too long ago I went through the most challenging crisis in my life. Jeremy was right there for me. I had not seen him in a couple of years, and he made it a priority to come and see me in New York, in my time of need. I wasn't surprised, however it reaffirmed what I have always known about him; he puts others before himself.
I will always remeber the pride in his eyes when he held his daughter, Skylar, and the big smile on his face as he laughed with his fiance' Kira. Jeremy I will miss you, as well as everybody who knows you.
my deepest condolences to you and the family.....
writing good things about jeremy is the saddest thing i have ever done but at least it is an easy task, still in hysterics i hope this is readable. i have nothing but great memories of times spent or conversing with him. i considered him one of the most easy going people i have encountered in the past few years. i first remember meeting jeremy in santa cruz on 10/14/00 after a disco biscuit show(although we may have been introduced before that night)......i distinctly recall standing in front of the venue trying to figure out where me and the kids i was riding with were going to stay. then steps in jeremy, insisting that we come join him and a few others in a hotel room that he already had. at that point in time i knew none of the people in that hotel room, some of which are now my best friends and my second family......jeremy was even nice enough to let me have some bed space that night......next to him :) hahaha now that i think about it, it was such a funny evening to begin what would be a friendship that ill never forget. another night that stands out from that week was when i was not allowed into a show due to my young age, jeremy spent SO much energy trying to argue my way in.....it just such a kind thing to do for a young girl who he met 2 days earlier.....just an example of the kindness and positive energy that poured out of him.
most of my memories of times spent with jeremy are also coincidently my favorite nights that i have spent travelling the country. me and him always got along more than most people did because our personalities were so similar.....i really cant express how much i will miss him.....i am truly honored to have known him and to even become closer with him throughout the past year as he went through some enormous changes in his life. it made me a happier person to see each and every step of this from the moment he told me that keara was having a baby until last week when i was talking to him about the engagement party/wedding. through some talks, he gave me some extremely on point advice that although i didnt heed his warnings eventually i heard the 'i told you so' and listened from there on in to what he had to say, basically because he was so similar to me just a few years ahead. last october when i was in florida for the biscuit shows i went over his place after the ft. lauderdale show on 10/14 which happened to be exactly 2 years since that night in santa cruz where we met.....we stayed up talked about the paths that both our lives were heading.....and that we both had some rough spots but that would just be learning experiences for the rest of our lives......since that night we have talked a lot and i smiled everytime i got sent another picture of skylar......who i am happy i got to see with her dad and mom 3 weeks ago on father's day weekend, it was so great to see him with his daughter in his arms.....it truly touched my heart to see the gleaming look in his eyes.....although im still in tears, its kind of comforting to know that he was so happy at the time of his death.....everything falling completely into place....every phone call from him was just one of excitement about either skylar, keara and even that he was back doing the business that he loves. yesterday i said to my friends that tears flow alot better than words......its just so hard to express in writing how much i will always love and miss jeremy......he is the perfect example of a great person, great friend, great son, great father and great fiance......an honest and caring person who did everything in life to keep a perfect balance of making himself and his friends live great, happy lives.......knowing him definitely changed my existence for the better....and i really mean that.....he was such a positive force in my life......hugs and kisses to all his family!!!!!
Hi everyone, my name is Jamie and I am Jeremy's mom. I want to thank each
and everyone of you on a daily basis for helping my husband David, myself,
Jeremy's sister Lisbeth and family as well as Kira and Skylar get through
something that no family should ever have to endure.
Everyday is a little better then the day before. Not only was Jeremy my son
for 30 years, but I also considered him my baby and business partner as
well. We spent many years in business together. The one thing JEREMY always
said is that I was one of the strongest people he had ever known. So every
morning I get up and say o.k. Jeremy, I will be what you always told me I
was. STRONG - in business deals we spoke and many times we disagreed with
each other. I listened to him, he listened to me, and he always seem to make
more sense then me. He was great at debating idea's with me. Of course, I
should have known at the beginning of every situation, I never had a chance
to win. Believe it or not, he always seem to be right. JEREMY was like a
computer, with a photographic mind. I could ask him at any time how much a
customer paid for something 3 years ago and without going into our files he
could quote the price. He had a passion for his personal training. He
believed that people should eat healthy, work out often and watch themselves
on a daily basis. However, this week when we cleaned out his car, I found a
couple of candy bar wrappers. I would like to think they belonged to someone
else, so let's just say they did. There wasn't a day that went by that our
front door didn't open and Jeremy would pop in by himself, take the
newspaper, read the sports section, leave it on the couch then be prepared
to say hello and talk. Many times he would walk in with something flopping
in his right hand, only to look down and see Skylar his daughter bouncing
around in the car seat. Skylar, well what can my husband David and I say
about this situation. We watched Jeremy go from Kir'as pregnancy, to being a
father to being a fiancé, which you could of as well called a husband. Both
Kira and Jeremy accepted each other for who they were. There love for each
other was one of strength with Skylar making it a threesome that no one
could break thru. I would see the way he would look at Kira and the way he
would look at Skylar. A look I never quite saw before in his eyes. A look of
contentment, a look of excitement and a look of true love. For all of this
both David and I will always be grateful for. Most people spend all of their
life looking for that special person or people and never find them. In
JEREMY'S short time here, he achieved and found something special, LOVE.
Jeremy had a special relationship with his sister Lisbeth who lives in
Virginia. He always shared the good and bad times with her first, we were
always second to know. He loved and respected his brothinlaw Mark and had a
special place for his aunt Laurie who only saw Jeremy thru rose colored
glasses. He loved to play with his nephew Matthew who now realizes he has
gone someplace special. As for his father David, well that was another
story. They were as close as a son and father could be. They spoke on a
daily basis, discussed sports, books, went to ball games together and
movies. There wasn't anything David wouldn't have done for Jeremy all he
ever had to do was ask.
Well everyone, to say that we won't miss JEREMY walking thru our door on a
daily basis would be a lie, to say we won't miss his cute smile, big blue
eyes, sense of humor and kindness would be a lie. In fact we will miss
everything about him. However, it is better to have loved and lost then
never to have loved at all and JEREMY was so loved.
We are so very grateful to all of you for keeping his memory alive, that is
all we have, please keep it going for him, for all of us. With appreciation,
caring and xxxxx Jamie and David Wainland
On May 5th, 1999, I walked outside after our concert at Jack Straw's,
in Charlotte N.C. to meet with the kids who had come out to see us in
the south. This is the first time I met Jeremy Wainland. He was
excited. So was I. He was always excited. That was the thing about
Jeremy. That was what we had in common. Our love for music, our
constant excitement, and our Jewish Mothers.
Everytime I saw him, he was excited about something. It was actually
quite infectious. Over the years, Jeremy became one of the more well
known faces and voices of the biscuits' scene. I have hung out with
him in Washington, NYC, Santa Cruz, North Carolina, Florida, Chicago,
Philadelphia, Detroit, and nearly everywhere in between. His energy
was amazing, anyone who knows Jeremy can attest to that fact...He was
just full of energy, all of the time. Jeremy touched nearly everyone
in our scene throughout the last four years.
One thing that sticks out about Jeremy was his concern for the band
as people. He knew how hard it was to be traveling around, and rather
than just talking to us about the music, he would always be more
interested in talking about us, the people, which means so much to
us. It was as if Jeremy had turned into a Jewish Mother himself,
always trying to baby us, always wondering if we had been eating
enough, always asking if WE were ok, and if there was anything he
could send us... Did we need new scooters, or backpacks, or golf
And there always seemed to be news coming from Jeremy, or about him.
We would hear about his business. To this day my closet is actually
overflowing with the gifts he would send. I have more golf clubs than
even the most experienced golfer would ever need thanks to Jeremy's
We would hear news about his new life. Jeremy is having a baby. "What
wonderful news", we all thought. Jeremy is getting married. Jeremy is
becoming a health nut. My mother even called me once to tell me that
she had seen him on the news, of all things he had been grazed by a
bullet. The fact of the matter is, Jeremy was so well known in our
scene that even my mother knew him.
This last bit of news is absolutely devastating to everyone in the
disco biscuits. We had become accustomed to the fact that Jeremy
would be much less present at our concerts due to the increased
responsibility he had. I was not surprised to hear from his mother
that he had been working 18 hour days of recent. But none of us were
ready for the news that Jeremy had seen his last Disco Biscuits
concert, or of course much more important than that, that we had seen
Jeremy for the last time.
The last time I saw Jeremy tears were rolling down his face as we
played the Hot Air Balloon in memory of his grandmother in
Gainseville, the only time he had ever asked anything of us. Today,
we all shed tears in memory of Jeremy. Jeremy, we will never forget
"If I had three wishes, I'd wish I can see you again."
Jamie and David Wainland, Jeremy's parents, wrote this to their business associates the day after Jeremy's funeral.
Dear Friends, this is the hardest thing I ever had to write in my life.
On Sunday, July 6th we lost our son Jeremy Wainland 30 years old. Many
of you had done business with Jeremy while he was with me, many of you had spoken with him several times, many of you had met him through music tours and so manyof you had gotten to know him and had become his friend. Whether it was business you ended up speaking about or sports including fantasy football or just life, he cared about all of you.
My husband and my heart are very heavy at this time. We buried Jeremy
yesterday and over 200 people showed up for his send off. He had also
followed a group called the Disco Biscuits. There are hundreds of e-mails
and pictures on how he effected their lives. Jeremy had just come back
from PERU with his dad where they started a monster of a business. PERU
crys for him - PERU, David and I are dedicated to bringing his dream home. For
those who wish to make this happen with us we welcome you, for those who
knew him personally we say how lucky you were,for those who never met him
you would have loved him, for those of you who started to know him you at
least had that chance of a beginning relationship.
Jeremy leaves a fiancee Kira and child Skylar. His engagement party was to
be the 9th of August and his wedding March 7th. We have set up a fund for
his 7 month old baby Skylar . We ask in lieu of baskets, or anything you
might have thought to send whatever it is you can give for Jeremy's baby you
can send to:
Sklar T. Pladl c/o Lisbeth and Mark Schnurman
12331 Bradford Landing Way
Glen Allen, Va. 23059.
I know there are no words you can say to us at this time, however to his
business friends grasp that moment that affected you the most about Jeremy
and keep it with you, for those who never met him in person when you have a
drink next time, toast Jeremy, he would have wanted that. I now close
with a very heavy and sad heart. We are proud to call Jeremy our son and will
always love him, he will never be forgotten. For him we will be back to
work next week, for his dream we will bring it all the way home. With many
feelings, his mommy and daddy, Jamie and David Wainland
As I read through these submissions and on the disco biscuit website, I realize most of you do not know me. Jeremy kind of had 2 lives that never intertwined until now. My name is David Serle and I have known Jeremy for 17 years. I grew up with him and we are and always will be best friends.
Jeremy always spoke very highly about the close relationships he had while going on tour. He valued all friendships and all those people we never met. He met everyone. He was the type of person that if there was 10,000 people in the room, before you got to the water cooler you would know who Jeremy Wainland was. He always stood out. That was Jeremy. I lived with him for 3 very long years. If you haven't lived with him than you might not appreciate how messy he was. I really thought I was the messiest person alive, and I was wrong, really wrong.
Unfortunately, something like this has to happen in order to really and truly know how much Jeremy met to us, and it plain sucks. Jeremy taught me a lot about life and how to live it. He was instrumental in I meeting my wife and in just about everything important to me. Jeremy was my mentor, my best friend, and a person who I miss very much.
I am not a person who really cares for music. However, Jeremy got me to go to the Phish concert in Florida for the Millenium. I had the best time. Any time I hung out with Jeremy I had a great time. Jeremy was just full of life, always energetic, and sure liked to talk a lot.
When I attended his funeral, it hit me like a brick. I did not know what I was going to do. I knew I had to be strong for his family who were like my 2nd parents. So when I was asked by his family to speak at his funeral I said of course I would. For those of you who do not know me, I do not like to speak in public places. So I decided I was going to do what Jeremy would of done and just say what I felt in an impromptu speach, and I know Jeremy was there to help me. Jeremy and Kira were planning this wedding and I was supposed to be his best man and prepare a best man speech and not a eulogy speech. I am going to miss you Jer. I will try to write a couple funny stories I have of Jeremy in the future. I just wanted to introduce myself and if any of you just want to talk email me at Davidserle@aol.com.