Montclair, NJ – Family and friends gathered Saturday morning to remember the life of Jordan T. Tassy. Montclair lost Jordan, who was 22 years old, on March 25 after he was hospitalized from COVID-19 on March 16. The socially-distanced remembrance, held outdoors at Nishuane Park and also livestreamed, was a joyous celebration of Jordan’s life.
“We are all here because we know the impact, the blessing, and the truth of Jordan Tassy’s life,” said Unitarian Universalist Congregation Montclair’s Reverend Anya Sandler Michael.
Longtime family friend Christian Dubuque spoke of the beautiful rainbow of faces in Nishuane Park to celebrate Jordan and how the community came together with an outpouring of support for his mother Norma Tassy and father Tom.
“Graceful is the exact word I would use to describe my best friend Jordan,” said Tiaron Jenkins. “A gracefulness that over the years, I began to notice, what appeared to carry him, almost as if he were floating. He was effortlessly able to transform into whatever person you needed to in order to get the most loving version of the person standing across from him. Let us all today help each other celebrate a life of complete grace and understanding.”
Many of Jordan’s friends, showing their love and connection to him by wearing red shirts, recalled memories from Jordan’s childhood, and described his joyful spirit, his fascination with firetrucks, how he seemed to know everyone in town and how he touched their lives.
“I didn’t know Jordan very well, and like many in Montclair, I came to know him because of his service to our town. When several of our township employees became sick with COVID-19 and we needed to suspend a recycling program, with an entrepreneurial spirit and a calling for service, Jordan leapt into the problem,” said Councilor Peter Yacobellis, describing how Jordan helped countless people and businesses who needed a helping hand.
Yacobellis then spoke of the history of leaders in Montclair, particularly from the Fourth Ward, who have been stepping up for generations to make life better for everyone in the town.
“There are too many to name, but I will forever count Jordan among them,” he said. “It is young people like Jordan who gives me the confidence that our future is in good hands. So to honor him and all the people whose lives he’s touched, I ask the people of this town to continue to step up, to be there for each other, to help those in need and to be kind, like Jordan was.”
Fourth Ward Councilor David Cummings spoke of Jordan’s leadership, character and his love for and dedication to Montclair.
Cummings said that on April 24, during a cleanup of Nishuane Park, a tree will be planted in Jordan’s honor, a dogwood tree requested by his mother Norma Tassy as it was one of his favorites.
“We’re going to do that because we do need to show people that when you are a good person, when you are a caring person, someone who touches many lives in a positive way, you should not be forgotten,” said Cummings. “And with that tree, Jordan will never be forgotten.”
Following a performance of “Amazing Grace,” Reverend Anya Sandler Michael thanked the community for holding each other and called for them to go with amazing grace.
“May you go with that amazing grace that reminds you that we are a community that needs one another. May you go with that amazing grace that helps you pull people together, not apart, And may you call that amazing grace, at some times, by the name, Jordan Tassy.”