Jeremy Gould – referred to affectionately as “J. Gould” -- knew how to bring out the best in people.
He did it at home with the love of his life, his wife Nicole, and six children. He did it in the community as a coach of youth football and tee ball, and as a proactive member of such groups as the Knights of Columbus, Ancient Order of Hibernians, Pi Lambda Phi, and the East Carolina University Pirate Club.
He did it at his church – St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church -- while spending time with his Teams of Our Lady prayer group and while guiding important fund-raising events such as the golf tournament and the church school’s annual gala.
He also did it professionally as a Senior Vice President/Partner at Vertically Integrated Projects (VIP), where he led a team that designed and furnished hotels around the country so those properties looked great for guests and performed well for owners.
Jeremy was all about relationships, especially his powerful spiritual relationship with God. He enthusiastically embraced his Catholic faith, fellowship, and values that are part of being “brother in Christ.”
Passionate commitment to excellence. That was the common quality in everything Jeremy did – and his passion was contagious. His “can do” spirit, his generous personality, and his comfortable laugh all usually entered a room before he did.
On Thursday, May 2, Jeremy took those qualities with him as he left this earth and started his journey with God. His big heart gave out as he was attending a hotel trade show in Las Vegas, Nevada while literally surrounded by the colleagues and the industry he loved. But he died much too young and much too far from home.
Jeremy was born on January 2, 1971 in Raleigh, North Carolina, the first of two sons of Lindsey Marshall Gould and Jewelle Jackson Boone. He earned his high school diploma at Raleigh’s Broughton High School in 1989 and his undergraduate degree at East Carolina University (ECU) in 1994, a school he continued to love and passionately support long after graduation.
He was predeceased in death by both sets of his grandparents -- Thomas and Martha Gould, as well as J.B. and Blanche Jackson.
Surviving him are his wife, Nicole Rollins Gould; children – Brooke Lindsey, Ashlynn Grace, Anna, Jackson, Alexander, and Luke; his mother, Jewelle Jackson Boone, and stepfather, Bobby Boone, of Greenville, NC; his father, Lindsey Marshall Gould, and stepmother, Phyllis Gould, of Raleigh, NC; and his brother, Daniel Gould and his family – wife Laurie and their children, Daisy and Brodie, of Fuquay-Varina, NC. Stepbrother, Hill Boone of Carlsbad, CA and stepsister, Kathryn Boone of Raleigh, NC.
Our lives are typically measured in years, but this grieving family prefers to measure Jeremy’s life in moments. Endearing and enduring moments like joining Jeremy to cheer on his beloved ECU football team or the Duke basketball squad. Like enjoying fine food and fine friends at a backyard cookout. Like sitting around the fire pit at the family farm after catching his “big daddy bass” to share good jokes and great bourbon.
These moments and so many more fill our mental scrapbook of memories. They fill our hearts with grateful joy. And most recently, they fill our eyes with happy tears.
Jeremy was a common man who was uncommon. His intensity inspired us. His loyalty impressed us. His knowledge dazzled us. His wit charmed us.
He didn’t just think about doing things – he acted. And he packed more activities into every 24 hours than many of us hope to undertake in a week.
Just last month, he launched a new business partnership that offered new professional opportunity and new security for his family. His widow, Nicole, will now carry forward these big ideas and solid plans in a way that Jeremy would want – with passion and energy, and especially with courage and confidence.
Every day of life was an adventure for Jeremy – and he lived life fully, with a heart full of love. No, every day did not smile on him – but he smiled on every day of life.
Now Jeremy has embarked on the greatest adventure of all, leaving us on earth and starting his journey with God. Death ended his life, but death has not ended his relationship with those of us who knew him and who continue loving him.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to St. Catherine of Siena Catholic School, 520 W. Holding Ave., Wake Forest, NC 27587.
Friends may visit with the family on Sunday, May 12, from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Bright Funeral Home & Cremation Center, 405 S. Main Street, Wake Forest, NC (919-556-5811).
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Monday, May 13, at 11 a.m. at St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church, 520 W. Holding Ave., Wake Forest, NC