In Memory of A Friend

“In Memory of a Friend – Jamie McGuinn”

Jamie McGuinn, a dedicated Mountain Justice Summer volunteer was tragically killed on Oct. 5, 2006 while riding a motor scooter near his home in Boone, North Carolina. He was 23. According to his mother, Cinda McGuinn,

“Jamie spent the last two years of his life fighting for our earth in the coal fields of West Virginia and here in the mountains of North Carolina that we call home. He had started to school at ABTech in Asheville and was returning to school after coming home to Boone, NC for his Dad’s birthday and a demonstration against a corrupt earth-destroying developer when he was hit on his motorcycle and killed instantly by a logging truck.

We miss him terribly and it doesn’t seem possible that this happy fun loving force for positive action could actually be gone. He loved to cook … he was going to culinary school and was really excited about it. I hate to think about the good he could have done if he hadn’t been taken so soon, too soon.”

Jamie will be remembered for his unfailing good humor, infectious laugh and his passionate defense of the mountains and communities of Appalachia. I remember Jamie vividly on the stage at the 2006 Heartwood Summit for the Mountains, playing – trying to play – Bob Dylan’s “A Hard Rains Gonna Fall.” He was just learning to play banjo, and was doing pretty well, but he struggled with a few of the chord changes, and messed up just a little – so when he got the to Dyan verse “I know my song well before I start singing” he cracked up, and the audience did too. A typical Jamie moment.

Jamie participated in many of the MJS actions, including the big rally against the Kentucky Coal Association in Lexington and the Pennies of Promise kick-off at the Charleston State Capitol.

Jamie was loved and he will be missed. He is survived by his parents, Doug and Cinda Poole McGuinn, his brother David McGuinn, and his girlfriend Beth Huntzinger.

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