In Memory of Jen Cohen
I must say how blessed I was to have Jennifer in my life. She was my life partner for 20 years and my best friend for 35 + years. She was an incredible person. She dedicated herself to make the world a better place. Whether that was to help friends, strangers, homeless or advocate for LGBT and Women rights. She advocated for marriage equality and was elated when it passed. She did not fear adversaries and met them head on. She was fearless. She opened my eyes to many issues, as well as challenge me. When I complained of societal issues. She would tell me to do something about it. As everyone knows, she pushed me into running for city commission. She supported me through this endeavor. She would have made a better representative of the people. She brought out the best in most people. She gave so much to her students so they would excel in this society and still advocated todays issues with them. I could write a book about Jen and all her accomplishments. The world lost an amazing woman and I pray I would see my love and best friend again. She will be forever in my heart. RIP Jen.
Thank you for being such a good friend to Jen. I wish I could be with you. Please mention if you find it appropriate that Jen and I were close in spirit and heart if not in proximity.
With gratitude Toni Van Pelt
My name is Kimberly Eversole. I was only in the southern Sarasota County NOW chapter for a little while. This was around 2006. I got to talk with Jen a lot, though. I remember this one time I was whining about hair loss. I was pretty freaked about this little thing. She had this level-headed, humorous response. She told me about a friend who took her hair loss in stride and got a lady toupee. She found a way to level with me, comfort me, and make me laugh. She was that kind of person. There is a lot more to her, of course. This is just one of my memories that sort of sticks out.
I am really sad that she is no longer with us. She believed in empowering others to do good. I also remember her telling someone that was a new member at one of our NOW meetings how she could be more empowered. She said something like, “Hey, you can write letters to congress and speak your mind, maybe even cuss them out.” She ignored boundaries in the best way. When it was called for.
I was really sad to get the news of her death. I wish she could have had a much longer life.
It is with sadness that I write this tribute in honor of my long time friend, Jennifer Cohen. We met decades ago and have shared memories mostly as NOW members in the Manatee Sarasota area. I knew her as a robust, energetic, determined, intelligent, hard working young woman who grew into the person I knew until she died in Oct. 2018. I also met her wonderful family members and saw the love they felt for one another. We visited socially but mostly we worked hard in a variety of ways to further the causes of women. We marched, we rallied, we attended NOW conferences, we worked together on our local NOW Board. I remember when she drove a group of us to a National Conference in Nashville. We had a great time. And then there were those Roe v Wade actions until we finally won that battle. She was always intrepid and right to the end, she never gave up hope of overcoming. I will miss Jen and her determination to make the most of every minute. She inspired me to do the same. RIP, Jennifer. You will be sorely missed.
I always enjoyed my visits to her home in North Port and appreciated her battles for women’s rights and her endless battle with cancer. She was a dynamic feminist and leader. Her energy always amazed me. Her untimely death at such a young age is a shame, but her contributions to feminism will live on in my memories and my heart.
I met Jen when she was running the NOW State Conference and was amazed by her energy and thoughtfulness. She was also a whiz at technology and a strong feminist. We will miss her leadership.
just got the news now. I’m in costa rica cruising. she was such a delightful person. always had a smile on her face and a happy way about her. Will miss her so. Much too young to go.
Jen and I traveled many paths together. We met at a NOW meeting. We traveled together many times. There was only one Jen. She had more energy than anyone I have known. She was kind and always wanted to make the world a better place. Guess we won’t be making the trip to San Fran that was on our agenda. I will miss this wonderful person. Judy Wysnewski
Jennifer was always a very strong compassionate woman with very strong opinions and knew what she wanted and fought for women’s rights. This did not mean she was a hard person. She was such a good role model for her young students and for her friends as well. She had a huge heart and tried to help everyone in need including animals. She loved everybody. She has left a hole in my heart that will never be filled. Rest in Peace Jen.
Jen was a strong, inspirational leader and a loving friend; when someone was in need Jen was there to help.
Jen was my first feminist friend in Florida. We shared many car trips together, Orlando and Tallahassee. She and I found things in common such as working with HIV positive people, her in California, me in New Jersey. Our conversations never stopped on those long drives. She taught me to continue, reach for the dream and never give up. She taught me to have patience with Florida politics and that we need to celebrate every little step. Her inspiration got me to take up a leadership role in FLNOW and her laughter could fill a room. Even though I knew the end was near and I know she is longer in pain, I wish I could hear her voice again.