The Saint Croix Courier

St. Stephen, NB

2008 Jan 11

Jenna was "Heaven's angel"

Memorial concert will raise funds
for Save Passamaquoddy Bay


Friends of Jenna Sullivan, who died in a car accident in November at age 23, will gather in St. Andrews on Jan. 26 for a concert aimed at honouring her while raising funds for Save Passamaquoddy Bay in its fight against LNG development.
ST. ANDREWS — Jenna Sullivanwas only 23 when she was tragically killed in a car accident in November but she touched the hearts of many and there was no shortage of local artists wanting to take part in a concert in her memory.

The Jenna L. Sullivan Memorial Concert will be held Saturday, Jan. 26 in the Van Horne ballroom at the Fairmont Algonquin starting at 7p.m. and all proceeds will be donated to Save Passamaquoddy Bay (SPB). The group is spearheading the fight against liquefied natural gas developments in Maine. It's a cause Sullivan supported.

A native of Four Falls, near GrandFalls, she had produced a calendar featuring up and coming musicians from all over Charlotte County and had decided to donate the proceeds from the sales to SPB.

Sadly the young woman was killed when her car was in collision with a school bus, west of Saskatoon, as she was travelling across Canada, and she never got to see the finished calendar.

Now the artists featured in the calendar "The Musical Men of Passamaquoddy Bay" will perform in her memory to raise funds for a cause that was close to the heart of Sullivan, who had worked for two summers at Sweet Harvest Market in St.Andrews, where she is fondly remembered.

Bob Hamel, one of those who will be performing, has organized the concert and said it was something he and Sullivan had talked about doing when she returned to this area. She had planned a trip to Turkey following her cross-Canada jaunt.

"We had talked about this on Facebook while she was away, and when she returned we were going to do this concert with all the guys on the calendar. She would have been back in March. She was going to host the show and we would all perform," Hamel said.

"I got it all together, and once I talked to these guys they were all very willing. I also invited Ruth Dunfield to perform for two reasons — one is the fact that her song about Passamaquoddy Bay has kind of become a battle cry for Save Passamaquoddy Bay, and the other is because I teased Jenna about only featuring men in the calendar and she had said she would do one featuring the local female artists and Ruth is a representative of them," he said.

Hamel said he had known Sullivan for five or six years because she dated his stepson when they were both at St. Thomas University. This past summer was her second in St. Andrews, he said, and she had become involved in the fight against liquefied natural gas in Passamaquoddy Bay because she was ecologically minded.

The calendars, priced at $15 each, will be on sale at the concert, said Hamel, and they are also available at Sweet Harvest Market and Kennedy House.

"We only have about 50 copies left. They are selling really well. "

When he talked with Sullivan he said they had the idea for the concert and also for putting out a CD featuring a number from all those artists featured in the calendar.

"Every one of these guys has donated a song, and we are going to put together a memorial CD which will be sold at the concert to raise funds for Save Passamaquoddy Bay," he said.

Sullivan's parents, Keith and Cheryl Sullivan, will be coming to the concert, said Hamel, but her brother, Travis, and sister Erin, will not be able to attend as they live in Ontario, so he is hoping the event can be recorded for them.

As he remembered Sullivan he said she used to say she was walking through life like a Sunday stroll, and she never had an unkind word to say about anybody.

"She has an incredible memorial site on Facebook. There are about 600 people that are members of it from allover," Hamel said. "She was just a fine person. She loved photography — she was working to get into sports photography — and was a roller blading freak. That was her morning ritual."

The concert will feature Soapstone Tribe, Adam Olmstead, Dan Cunningham, Gordon Gets Lost, Hamel, Ideal Gas Law, Homemade Bread, Farley, Ryan LeBlanc, Sean Smith, and special guest Ruth Dunfield.

Admission is strictly by donation, said Hamel. He said they have sent out a huge mailing to people all around Passamaquoddy Bay.

He said the Fairmont Algonquin has provided everything they need. The ballroom can hold 200 people, said Hamel, and they are hoping to fill it.

"I am just amazed by the response of people. Everybody has been just great. It is a worthy cause and it was something she supported. There was a tremendous amount of money donated at her funeral," Hamel said.

"Staff from Sweet Harvest Market will be taking care of the door for us and collecting the donations. All the artists had gigs but they all said they would set them aside to perform here.

"I am sure there will be a big contingent from her home town. She touched a tremendous amount of people. She was one of those people that everybody loved. "

Hamel wrote an e-mail Wednesday night after spending time reflecting and reading through tributes on Facebook.

"I guess to sum it up, she had a profound impact on everyone she met," he writes. "As I looked at Facebook tonight, there are 971 postings on her page and they are still coming.... It goes on and on. She was heaven's angel sent here to touch our hearts and teach us lessons. We will all learn them in our own time."


© 2008 Advocate Media
Article republished on Save Passamaquoddy Bay website with permission.

The Saint Croix Courier, St. Stephen, NB