Countdown #55 to Unity Plaza Opening – Butterfly Garden to be Named in J.T. Townsend’s Honor

Jacksonville Jaguars HC Gus Bradley and J.T. Townsend

Jacksonville Jaguars HC Gus Bradley and J.T. Townsend

JT Townsend Day Remembrance and Gathering

February 7 at Unity Plaza

The JT Townsend Foundation remembers JT Townsend with a special, commemorative gathering at Unity Plaza on February 7, 2015.

JT Townsend made an incredible impact on the Jacksonville community. Following a spinal cord injury in 2004, JT founded the JT Townsend Foundation (JTTF). “Through JTTF, JT helped countless families living with disabilities on the First Coast. His never quit attitude inspired others to never give up and we are so proud to remember him on this day,” said Judi Zitiello, Board Chairperson, JT Townsend Foundation.

In an effort to honor him, even in his absence, February 7th was designated as the official “JT Townsend Day” by Mayor Alvin Brown last year in Jacksonville in conjunction with his birthday weekend – JT was born on February 7, 1987. Mayor Brown will attend this year’s event on Saturday. “JT blessed us with his life and he continues to bless us with his legacy,” said Mayor Alvin Brown. “He dedicated himself to providing support, assistance and hope to people with disabilities and their families. We must always remember JT’s generous spirit, and work to keep that spirit alive through our actions.”

The Friends of JT Townsend will launch fundraising efforts to establish the JT Townsend Scholarship at the University of North Florida, in memory of UNF alumnus JT Townsend, who earned his degree in sport management in the spring of 2013. Over the next five years, the Friends of JT Townsend intend to raise $30,000 to establish this scholarship endowment for undergraduate sport management majors. “JT was such an inspiration to all who knew him, as shown by his relentlessly optimistic approach to life,” said UNF President John A. Delaney. “He was always helping others in need, so I can’t think of a better way to honor his legacy than through the establishment of the JT Townsend Endowed Scholarship Fund.”

Unity Plaza will place a beautiful, commemorative stone that will reside in a butterfly garden near the ADA ramp upon completion at Unity Plaza. “Our community will remember JT daily through this signature marker in the Unity Plaza entrance Butterfly Garden. The garden will be a special, humble space where we can all reflect and remember JT,” said Jennifer Jones, Executive Director, Unity Plaza.

The event begins at 9:15 am at Unity Plaza followed by a remembrance walk up Riverside Avenue to Corner Bakery where family and friends will gather to celebrate JT’s birthday.

For more information, contact:

Pauline Gerry: Board Member, JT Townsend Foundation & Principal, AZMARK, Inc.

904-728-4722; pgerry@azmarkinc.com

Kelly Winer: Board Member, JT Townsend Foundation; 904-501-3488; kellyjttf@gmail.com

JT Butterfly Garden image

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