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Elevation Rock Gym honors life of devoted climber

Eli Lucero
The Herald Journal
Madison Ward, sister of JJ Ward, belays a climber at Elevation Rock Gym on Friday.

On Friday afternoon, friends and family of Jeremy Joseph Ward honored his life at the place he spent most of his time, Elevation Rock Gym.

On May 11, J.J. died at the age of 19 from a very rare form of leukemia. Because climbing was his favorite activity, Jami Smith — the mother of one of J.J.’s friends — thought a climbing event would be the perfect way to celebrate his life and talents.

“He had an amazing life and he touched a lot of people,” Smith said. “He touched my son’s life a lot, and I wanted to give back to him for that.”

At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, J.J. developed an affection for rock climbing out of boredom. The hobby became his passion. Read the rest of the story on HJnews.com.

This story is made possible thanks to a community reporting partnership between The Herald Journal and Utah Public Radio.