Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Looking Back

Exactly three years ago today we dedicated Jocie's Monument at the top of Beaver Mountain. As I had not yet fallen in love with photography...most of these photos were taken by friends...specifically the lovely Leisa of Deer Hollow. Since The Garlick Press is a record of this family and our steps through a life of joy and sorrow..I wanted the memories of this day preserved here.

It was a magical day.

The ski resort was painted in the freshest autumnal attire.

Chair after chair...

we shuttled approximately 400 people to the top of the ski resort

where we had a little help from "summer lifties" to unload into the most glorious setting.

In planning the memorial dedication date, we could only hope for good weather and guess...wish...pray that the leaves would be turning. Whether or not it snowed, rained, or froze, we were going to hold this event...there was no fall-back date. Turns out, we timed it perfectly...just simply couldn't have asked for anything better for this day.

The air was warm and dry, with a slight cool breeze unleashing the color from the trees. Or rather...maybe the golden, twirling Quaken Aspen leaves that floated down creating a carpet of gold beneath our feet, were a gift from Jocie and heaven.

Amazingly we served lunch to approximately 400 friends and family at the top of the mountain with no electricity and no kitchen. Overwhelming support from helpers surrounded our family.

We dined on fresh tortillas with slow roasted pork and beef, fresh salsa and chips...

and delicious deserts of every variety!

While guests arrived and enjoyed lunch, Libbie Linton's soothing melodies drifted across the high mountain peak...warming souls and calming sorrows.

Sporting their new Jiggy t-shirts, the brilliant faces of Jocie's friends dotted the mountain.

Aren't they something else? Brave, happy and resilient despite missing their red-headed girlfriend...

and yet there were moments for solemn reflection.

The boy drinking the Mountain Dew hardly resembles the one we presently call The Teenager.  Even now...though it is getting quite small, he still wears his Jiggy t-shirt about once a week.

Some of our most favorite people in the world came from near and distant places to commemorate this occasion and pay tribute to our girl! I continue to be appreciative for that level of support.

And finally the dedication...the reason we all had gathered. Numerous thank yous to all who helped in any way, from digging the hole, to making log benches, donating time and money, hauling a giant rock up the mountain, and chopping up enough salsa to feed an army.

Of course there were tears, but there were plenty of laughs and hugs to soothe the sorrows.

Mike and Brandon sang Mike's Jiggy song he wrote...which made us smile.

And sisters whisper and giggle together for a moment.

And finally, the unveiling of the monument...

Bathed in flowers, the rugged stone monument soaks up the afternoon sun of this most magnificent Fall day. 

Daddy Dean welcomed all... and took a few moments, albeit emotional...to explain why we picked this spot for the monument. The words written on the monument were read aloud.

This site is dedicated to the memory of Jocie "Jiggy" Garlick.  On a beautiful spring day, Jocie skied her last run at Beaver Mountain at the tender age of fifteen.  Jocie's long red hair and easy laugh were frequent sights on the runs at the Beav, which she considered her second home.  Skiing was her greatest passion and she was a beloved member of the Beaver Mountain family.  Her spirit will remain where she was the happiest, here on the mountain.  Her friends and family donate this monument to her memory and encourage all to live life to its fullest, as Jocie did.

"Go Big or Go Home"

As time has passed, I realize today the significance the making of this monument had in a mourning Father's journey through grief. Dean spent the entire summer designing, planning, physically working on this project. His daughter...who vanished from his embrace so quickly the mind can barely process it; he needed something physical to connect him to his baby girl.

Ted Seeholzer, owner of Beaver Mountain delivered a few beautiful words honoring the spirits of his father and our Jocie. 

99 Red Balloons...the theme for the dedication. The inspiration came to me one day as I was listening to Jocie's music.

I recalled Jocie's love for every variety of music. At the top of their lungs, she and girlfriends were singing "99 Red Balloons" that morning as they rode the ski lift for the last time.

"99 Red Balloon...I think of you and let them go..."

Cass and Diane sang to their baby sister...

as the balloons floated off to reach Jocie in heaven...

I had someone tell me later, that the Garlick family had certainly provided a little glimpse of heaven that September day on the mountain. We would be absolutely mistaken to take any accolades for the day...we created the logistics, but the heaven part came from Jocie!


  1. thank you for this. You have such a gift for creating beauty from ashes. Much love to you today.

  2. Memories of that day are truly beautiful, and forever in our hearts. The heavens were opened!

  3. I truly don't think the beauty and spirit of that day can ever be duplicated....not until we will meet her again. It was a gift for all of us.
    Thank you.

    We miss her.

  4. It was the perfect day. What a lovely way to commemerate Jocie. Thank you for letting us be part of it.

  5. Oh my goodness. What a beautiful and sacred day. Thank you for sharing it with us, your friends, in the blogging community.

  6. You couldn't have asked for a more beautiful fall day. It was a day many will remember. Thanks for sharing this day three years later. Lots of love!

  7. I am so grateful for you and for your blog. And I'm so glad that Leisa is your friend, so she could capture these beautiful photos of this special commemoration. I feel blessed to know you, Lisa.

  8. It would seem, like our family, you chose to celebrate the time you had with your daughter. When we farewelled our son we asked everyone to wear happy colours...no black. This bought tears to my eyes...what an amazing tribute to your daughter. I am glad we took the same class xx

  9. Oh Lisa, I have no words. Thank you for sharing that beautiful day with us and a glimpse of your beautiful daughter. You have amazing strength. I am so glad I didn't miss this post. Sending love and friendship your way.

  10. Lisa, thanks for sharing that moment in time here. Wish I had known you then to offer another comforting embrace. The post is beautiful and so is your daughter. That day certainly was a beautiful one. Sending hugs now.XX

  11. Thank you for sharing Lisa! What a sweet day to have with your family. Josie was simply a full of life girl who I remember as my sidekick all those summers days. Thank you!

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  13. Is there a way I can still get an I <3 JG shirt somewhere?