James Reid Harrison, II, affectionately known as Jamie, entered this world as a comet of Love, Light, and Energy on July 16, 1985. He loved his home, his hometown, his parents, his sister and brother-in-law, family, friends and all the little and big moments which comprised his remarkable life of unpretentious, unbridled, courageous and unconditional Loving. He died gently in his sleep in the home he loved, not surprisingly, with a tender sweet smile illuminating his peaceful and blessed countenance.
Asked once what kindness was his answer was simple, “Always being good and nice like Nanny, sharing everything with Caela, trying my best, saying my prayers and UNFREEING MY LOVE.” Jamie was five when he declared unfreeing his love as his inner Light and spent the rest of his life showing us how one goes about that. He had a different set of eyes than most: all were equal, all were worthy of his compassion and caring; he was without prejudice and did not judge anyone. His capacity for forgiveness and understanding was limitless. His inherent ability to embrace and be with you in sorrow, fear, anger, despair, laughter, celebration, and joy was his love freed. And once the connection was made, it was for life; he remembered and would always be there for you.
Jamie was a lifelong student. All his Teachers, Mentors, Coaches, Priests, Clinical Directors, and everyone he met were captured by his passion and enthusiasm. He was fearless; Chapel Beach Club, MYAA, Casey’s Football, School Plays; he may not have been the most talented but always received the award with the most integrity and honor – best natured, team sport award.
At St. James and Red Bank Catholic, he made forever friends and loved being a Casey. His aspiration was to return to RBC as a Guidance Counselor. At the time of his death he was several blocks away having gone back to college and earned his credentials as an Alcohol and Drug Counselor as well as Recovery Coach. He was a Trustee and the driving force and Vision for the future of Safe Harbor Foundation; a charitable Foundation established to provide loving kindness, dignity and respect, hope, healing, education, and alternatives to those impacted by alcohol, drugs, addictive disorders, depression, and suicide.
His many jobs working with kids culminated in a professional career that he was born to and brought skills and talents rarely seen which cannot be taught; only enhanced through education and training. His view of Addiction and Recovery was large and always full of Promise as he understood people’s woundedness merely as doors into untapped potential for healing and fullness of life. He was not without his own pain. An empath, he felt everything deeply; intolerance, bigotry, bullying, and being cruel to another human being would cut right through him and reduce him to tears.
He was a talented musician who played multiple instruments. His guitar was a source of creativity and solace from a young age. Jamie believed in music and its inherent ability to heal, inspire, and bring communities together in justice, peace, and always the promise of Love and living life to its full potential for every man, woman, and child. He struggled with his weight particularly as additional medical complications were imposed upon him these past two years. He was in a great deal of physical pain yet never complained. God must have known far more than he let us know how tired he was when he said to Jamie, “Well done my faithful Servant” and gave him rest.
Jamie spent five years in recovery as an adolescent before he went to college. He later totally committed himself (he was always proud that his sober date was Father’s Day) to a mature spiritually based commitment to a 12 Step Fellowship that had guided and enriched his life for the past decade. He was a Matt Talbot Retreatant at San Alfonso, Men’s Group 29.
Jamie was pre-deceased by all his Grandparents, especially his beloved Nanny Madlyn Maher Walters and James J. Walters (maternal) and James Reid and Joanne Harrison (paternal); June Harrison and Reid Kelly. He is survived by his devoted parents Philip and Laura Harrison, his Sister and Brother in Law Micaela and Brian Malloy and Nephew to be; his Aunt and Uncle Steve and Barbara Walters and cousins Erin and Cate and their husbands and children in Texas; his cousin Wesley; and his Aunt and Uncle Sam and Patty Skinner and best friend and brother Cody Skinner and big brothers Jesse and Sam and their wives and all their children.
Arrangements are under the care of John E. Day Funeral Home: 85 Riverside Avenue, Red Bank, NJ 07701. A memorial mass will take place at St. James Roman Catholic Church in Red Bank on December 19, 2019 at 10:00am.
Due to the sudden and unexpected nature of his death; rather than a wake and going out right after his funeral, a Jamie-like Memorial put together by his friends and will be held early next year. His Love is upon the wind, in the stars and by the Sea he loved so much. His Light will continue to shine brightly...
In lieu of flowers, please make donations in his loving memory to Safe Harbor Foundation, Trinity Church, 50 White Street, Red Bank, New Jersey 07701.