Jenna Katherine Foltz, 15, of Ledyard died Thursday January 23, 2020, at Yale New Haven Hospital.
She was the beloved daughter of Stephen and Brenda (Lynch) Foltz. She is also survived by her brother Ethan.
Jenna was born on February 2, 2004 and grew up in Ledyard attending Ledyard Nursery School, Gales Ferry and Juliet Long Elementary Schools, Ledyard Middle School and Ledyard High School (including the Vo-Ag program).
Jenna had an immense love of life, including caring for all creatures big and small. She loved almost any outdoor activity, whether it was hiking, camping, fishing, horseback riding, skiing, golfing or sitting around a camp fire. She had a love of music and was always singing and/or playing her flute, piano or ukulele. She has always been a chorus enthusiast and loved being in the Ledyard Middle School and High School singing groups and their amazing shows. Jenna began writing and recording her own music and was collaborating with a friend to release an album. Jenna also loved the school Drama program and performed in several plays.
To say that Jenna loved Art is an understatement. With any spare moment, she would be drawing, painting, or doodling. Her excitement was evident when she created artwork and characters developing their plot lines with friend groups.
Karate has always been an integral part of Jenna’s life. She loved learning and growing with members of Red Tiger Kajukenbo and attending their many seminars and Outdoor Training Days. The Karate Ohana gave her self-confidence and amplified many of her admirable traits, including respect and kindness towards others. We are forever grateful to Grand Master Correia for his unending support and tireless devotion to all his students.
Summer to Jenna meant spending time at 4H Camp in Franklin. Jenna looked forward to attending summer camp year round, spending time with good friends while meeting many new ones. This high energy social environment is something Jenna thoroughly enjoyed. Outside of the summer months, 4H continued into a Teen Ambassador (TA) program which Jenna was an active part of. This TA program provided Jenna continued growth and fellowship with others of like spirit.
Beyond 4H summer camp, Jenna was also a participant of the Yale New Haven Pediatric Cardiology Heart Camp. The Pediatric Cardiology team at Yale began this camp to bring together children with common health issues, where they could have fun, build community, and explore their illnesses. Jenna loved Heart Camp, spending time with others with similar challenges, and lifting the spirits of many attendees.
Jenna was a lifelong advocate for the American Heart Association. Yearly, we participate in the Heartwalks which raise money and awareness for individuals with Heart Disease. At the elementary school, there was a yearly “Jump Rope for Heart” awareness and fundraising campaign for which Jenna was the Ambassador. As Ambassador, she was the “Heart Hero,” proudly donning hat and cape and speaking to all-school assemblies across the town.
Jenna lived every moment passionately and always had an amazing spirit, with her laugh and continuous smile that brightened any room she entered. She never let her health condition define her or affect her outlook on life. She tackled each day with brave confidence and bestowed genuine kindness to everyone she met. Unknowingly, she taught many about how to act with positivity and grace and to have the strength to tackle obstacles when encountered. She took on the persona of being a “heart hero” every day.
In addition to her parents and brother, Jenna is survived by her paternal grandparents David and Mary Foltz of Ledyard, and maternal grandfather Brenton Lynch of Palm Harbor FL. She is predeceased by her maternal grandmother Kay Lynch who passed in 2015, her brother, Garrett Foltz who passed in 2002, Uncle Kevin who passed in 2010, and her godfather “Uncle” Keith Hall in 2017. Jenna also leaves behind Uncle Dana and Aunt Claudia, Aunt Christine and Uncle Dale, Aunt Claudia and Uncle Bruce, Aunt Carol and Uncle Chris, Aunt Elizabeth “BB” and Uncle Leo, Aunt Sandy “Nanee” and Uncle Terry, Aunt Lisa, and cousins Bryan, Ben, Alicia, Vinnie, Caitlyn, Brandon, Josh, Sean, Jake, Erin, Allie, Carly and Ty. She will also be missed by many special friends from 4H Camp, CT Heart Camp, and school. She touched many lives in her short 16 years with us.
We are forever grateful for the doctors and nurses at Yale that came into Jenna’s life and were able to give her 16 happy years on this earth. Among the many that provided care for her are Dr. Martina Brueckner, Dr. Britton Keeshan, Dr. Jonathan Cardella, Dr. Robert Elder, Dr. Jeremy Asnes, Nancy Cross, Amanda Catucci, David Leone, Mr. Mark, Carol, Monica Garcia and many, many more doctors and nurses who did an outstanding job, always making sure she was comfortable with any decision being made.
Jenna’s family will greet relatives and friends on Tuesday, January 28, from 5-8pm at the Dinoto funeral home, 17 Pearl Street, Mystic. A Funeral service will be held on Wednesday, January 29, at 10am at the Ledyard Congregational Church, 722 Colonel Ledyard Highway, Ledyard. Burial will immediately follow the service in the Avery-Stoddard Cemetery, Route 214 in Ledyard. Reception to follow the burial at the Church.
Donations in Jenna’s memory may be made to support continued operation of the Heart Camp administered by the Yale New Haven Children’s Hospital. Checks can be sent to Amanda Catucci PO Box 208064, 333 Cedar St, New Haven, CT 06520 made out to Yale New Haven Childrens Hospital (memo section please note CT Heart Camp).
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