Jackson Coe remembered as charismatic young man
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Jackson Coe had the kind of personality that filled a room, the kind of courage that started trends and the kind of love that was valued by his family and friends.
“He was fiercely loyal to his friends, fiercely competitive and fiercely fun-loving,” Jackson’s dad Chip Coe said Monday. “Everything he did in life, he did it to its fullest.”
This week, Jackson’s family is mourning the death of the 25-year-old, who fell from the top of a six-story building in Manhattan’s West Village on July 4. Police said Jackson’s injuries were consistent with a fall.
Chip, who lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan, said Jackson had been hanging out with friends, celebrating the July Fourth holiday and enjoying a view of the New York City skyline from the roof, which the group had accessed using a fire escape. When the celebration ended, the group headed back down the fire escape, but Jackson told his friends he’d forgotten something and went back up the stairs.
That was the last time anyone saw Jackson, Chip said, and he believes his son must have fallen off the fire escape either going up or coming down.
“I am overcome with grief, and my heart is shattered,” Jackson’s mom Amy Harris wrote in a text from her home in Denver. “I can’t talk right now … Please know that my son was loved by all who knew him. He has left an enormous hole in our lives, and we will forever miss him.”
The Coe family moved to Steamboat Springs when Jackson was 3 years old. Chip served as president of Smartwool until leaving in 2006.
Jackson grew up skiing with the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club on Mount Werner and playing sports for the Steamboat Sailors. He was a member of the high school football and lacrosse teams and had a certain charisma that made him a social magnet and a trendsetter.
“I remember when he was about 12, he would wear a shirt and a tie to skateboard,” Chip said. “Within a month, there were a bunch of kids at the skatepark wearing one of their dad’s ties while they were skating.”
Jackson graduated from Steamboat Springs High School in 2011 and spent a semester at Michigan State University before returning to Colorado, earning a degree in business from the University of Colorado Boulder. He then moved to New York City to take a job with Tough Mudder. He spent two years there and, in January, began working for Seamless, a subsidiary of GrubHub.
His dad said Jackson’s zest for life influenced everything he did. He loved adventure, travel and new experiences and had recently returned from a week-long trip to Cuba. But Chip said his son was not an adrenaline junkie as he has been portrayed in the national media since his death last week.
“They did a horrific article about him being a thrill-seeker, and his death coming as a result of taking crazy risks,” Chip said about an article that was published by Fox News in New York City. “It triggered a bunch of internet trolling with people saying he got what he deserved.
“They have no appreciation for the background of these kids,” Chip continued. “They pulled a couple of images off his Instagram site of him doing back flips off a pier and another one off a sailboat. What Fox News thinks is thrill-seeking, in Steamboat, it is just a kid growing up.”
Jackson has two older brothers, twins Ryan and Taylor. Ryan lives in New York City, and Taylor lives in Denver.
To reach John F. Russell, call 970-871-4209, email jrussell@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @Framp1966.
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