James Kirk Bernard

James Kirk Bernard died unexpectedly on January 25, 2010 in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York, at the age of 22. Jamie was born on September 4, 1987 in New York City. Jamie lived the first 15 years of his life in Summit, New Jersey, and moved to Aspen, Colorado in 2002. Jamie graduated from Aspen High School in 2006 and attended Bard College, class of 2010, where he was majoring in Creative Writing. Jamie was a gifted writer, thinker, and artist. He loved Russian literature and history, and spent the summer of 2007 at UC-Berkeley studying Russian and the following summer at Smolny College in Saint Petersburg, Russia. Jamie was actively engaged in the political process, enrolling voters for the November 2008 election and helping to pass an important local environmental referendum. Jamie played soccer throughout his pre-college years and worked at Extreme Sports Camp every summer since 2004, helping youth with autism engage in outdoor recreation.

Jamie was blessed with triplet brothers, Fred and Bill. They had a special bond that can never be broken. His parents, Sallie and Tom Bernard, miss him immensely. Jamie is also survived by his grandparents, James and Audrey McConnell, and many aunts, uncles, and cousins. His good friends at Bard College and the many educators there supported him during his college life and feel a sense of heavy loss from his absence. Jamie leaves us with an impressive body of writings and art that will be compiled and released to those who wish to see it.

Jamie found a welcoming home at Bard College and will be buried at Bard Cemetery. A wake will be held on Friday, February 5 from 7:00 to 9:00 pm at Burnett & White Funeral Home in Red Hook, NY. Services lead by Reverend Bruce Chilton will take place on Saturday, February 6 at 10:00 am at the Chapel of the Innocents on the Bard College campus, followed by a reception and a celebration of Jamie’s life. A remembrance will take place later in February in Aspen, Colorado. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the James Kirk Bernard Foundation at JamesKirkBernardFoundation.org.