Sapphire Marie Jones

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What will separate us from the love of Christ?

Will anguish, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or the sword?

No, in all these things we conquer overwhelmingly through him who loved us.

For I am convinced that neither death, not life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor present things, nor future things, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 8:35, 37, 38

Sapphire's Wonderful Life!

Sapphire Marie Jones was determined from the earliest age to lead an extraordinarily life.   Christened "Lauren", at age 11 Ms. Jones became incensed when she discovered that her name was not unique but was one of many Laurens, and she took immediate steps to distinguish herself from the crowd.  After a brief stint as "Bugs Bunny" Lauren settled on the name Sapphire, a beautiful gem that she had recently read about, and to the best of her knowledge a name unclaimed by any other.   Ever hoping that his daughter might out-grow her pseudonym phase, her father realized that it was for real when Sapphire came to him early in her senior year of high school and declared, "Daddy, you know that I am Sapphire, my friends and teachers all know me as Sapphire, I'm never going back to Lauren. We can either do this the easy way or the hard way. Either you formally change my name to Sapphire now before graduation, or when I turn 18 I'll figure out a way to do it myself. Daddy, please?"   Her father melted, and it was done. (It was not until a family trip to Las Vegas two months before Sapphire's death when she glanced at a highway billboard with a picture of a lovely young lady under the heading "Sapphire" that she had an inclination that she may indeed be sharing her name with another; "Daddy, I don't understand. Is that an ad for the credit card?" "Yes, Pumpkin, I think so.").

Sapphire was as equally passionate about animals as she was for her beautiful name.  Despite unequivocal instructions from father to mother to under no circumstances ever take the children into a pet store, Sapphire and her sister soon became proud parents of two bearded dragons.   After a brief medical scare early on when Sapphire believed her beloved dragon to be prolapsing all of her internal organs, she was relieved to learn that Mother Nature had instead blessed her with multiple baby dragon eggs.   Her menagerie grew over the years to include fish, frogs, cats, dogs and a snake of which her parents continue to have the distinct pleasure to care for.

Sapphire was born in San Diego,CA, and her formative years were spent in Meridian, MS where her father was a stationed as a flight surgeon at the naval air station. Sapphire's mother postponed a career as an attorney to homeschool Sapphire and her sister, and under her academic tutelage Sapphire blossomed.   Having never been exposed to TV as a child, Sapphire was a voracious reader and developed a remarkable attention span and memory.   In 7th grade Sapphire was admitted to Duke University TIP (Talent Identification Program) for aspiring young scholars.  In middle school she moved to Southlake, TX and entered the Carroll ISD where she continued as an academic standout.   Sapphire was selected to the Carroll Medical Academy, was a National Merit Scholar Finalist and graduated Summa Cum Laude in June 2015.   While her parents are particularly proud of her achievement of all 5s on nearly every AP exam she took, Sapphire was believed to be more impressed with her ability to text nearly as fast as she could talk, and she could talk circles around her parents.

Sapphire matriculated into Texas A&M University in College Station where she was a psychology major and an academic standout.   Sapphire enjoyed a full scholarship to A&M as a recipient of the Presidents Endowed Scholarship, and as a pre-med sophomore was on track for a perfect 4.0 average.  She had been inducted into several honor societies including Phi Kappa Phi National Honor Society, Sigma Alpha Pi National Society of Leadership and Success, National Society of Collegiate Scholars, and Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society.   Sapphire’s greatest and most proud accomplishment, however, was being accepted into Texas A&M's Pre-Med Fellows Program, a highly competitive academic program offered annually to 10 sophomore students that guarantees early acceptance into Texas A&M College of Medicine upon completion of undergraduate training.

As a budding physician Sapphire toyed with the idea of following in her father’s footsteps in the field of emergency medicine.   However, one fateful afternoon when her pet cockatiel flew out of its cage, outside the house and into the pool where it was floating blissfully on the water, Sapphire’s immediate reaction was considerably less than optimal for an aspiring young ER doc.   Instead of fetching the pool net and rescuing the bathing bird, Sapphire instead let out a scream that can only be described in the biblical vernacular as “wailing and gnashing of teeth", and she began running in circles, jumping on one leg and pulling at her hair.  This gave her father pause to reconsider a more appropriate specialty path for his daughter, and at the time of Sapphire’s death he was actively encouraging her to consider the sedentary field of radiology.

Sapphire knew exactly who she was, and she proudly presented herself to the world.   A natural blonde, Sapphire dyed her hair black and wore black eyeliner, lipstick and garb.   Despite her atypical, brilliant look, Sapphire was readily accepted and embraced by the A&M community and everyone who knew her.  Sapphire cared deeply for others and found great meaning in her volunteer work with the A&M Student Counseling Helpline (979 845-2700).  Indeed, her delight at successfully completing the rigorous interview and training process to become a crisis counselor truly rivaled her pride of early admission into medical school.

Sapphire dearly loved A&M, her very special friends at Helpline, her pets, her family and very large network of friends, but she did not love herself. Despite the facade of an easy giggle and ever-present, infectious grin, Sapphire suffered from dysthymia, chronic, unremitting low level depression. To many, the only outward sign of her illness might have been her ability to weave the Green Day lyric "I walk a lonely road, the only one that I have ever known; don't know where it goes but it's only me, and I walk alone,” into most any conversation (with a smile and a giggle!). Despite ongoing treatment and prospects for a glorious and immensely successful life, Sapphire was not able to overcome her underlying melancholy, and she took her life on April 20, 2017 at age 19.

Sapphire is survived by her cat (“my son!”) Frodo, her snake Belatrix, her fish Superman and Dr. King, her bearded dragon Griffin, her cockatiel Loki, and her dogs Sparky, Sky and Luna. She is further survived by her mother and father MaryAnn and Timothy Jones, her sister Arya Jones, her grandparents David and Jennifer Jones and Dale and Regina Cavallin. Sapphire’s funeral was April 28, 2017 at Good Shepherd Catholic Church in Colleyville, TX, and she is laid to rest at Bluebonnet Hills Funeral Home and Memorial Park in Colleyville. 

If you see something, say something. Each of us possesses the power to save a life. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK.

Sapphire, in her own words...

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