Information / Narrative

[ Provided by the Pinkerton family — 11:30am, August 16, 2010 ]

Jeremy Alan Pinkerton, 22, died August 15, 2010, at the University of Virginia Medical Center due to injuries he sustained as a result of an automobile accident the afternoon of August 12, 2010. He was traveling west on Interstate 66 approximately 14 miles from Interstate 81 on his way to Capon Springs, West Virginia, for a family gathering. Driving through a heavy summer thunderstorm, he hydroplaned, lost control, spun across the center median, and was struck by a tractor-trailer oncoming in the eastbound lane.

Jeremy was stabilized and airlifted to Winchester Medical Center and then flown to the University of Virginia Medical Center by Pegasus once the weather cleared. There, his treatment team, led by Dr. Neal Kassell, determined that the devastating head injury was not treatable. We prayed and asked others to pray for a miracle, hoping that the diagnosis was wrong, but it was not to be. We then contacted LifeNet Health to begin the long and difficult process of allowing Jeremy to donate his organs to save others. He was blessed to be in the top 1% of all donors, and was able to donate his heart, lungs, liver, and kidney, thus saving 4 lives. He also donated corneas and ribs, as well as cartilage, tendon, and skin, in all over 20 types of tissue, which went and will go out to as many as 1,000 people around the country.

We have been so fortunate that family and Jeremy's closest friends, including many members of the Maryland sailing team, were able to join us in the Surgical Intensive Care Unit and family lounge for the last days of his life, grieving, but also sharing stories of outrageous pranks and many other memories. We thank everyone who has been to visit, prayed for a miracle, sent food, or connected by text, email, or phone. The last days of Jeremy’s life were incredibly difficult, and we are so grateful to everyone for their support.

In lieu of flowers, please make contributions to the Jeremy Pinkerton Memorial Fund. The Fund plans gifts to Pegasus, SOCA, the Maryland Sailing Team, Wintergreen Adaptive Sports, and we hope for the establishment of an annual scholarship for a bright, creative student with a passion for computer science. Details are available under Memorial Fund on this site.

Jeremy attended the Covenant School and graduated from Charlottesville High School in 2006. He attended Longwood University for a year before transferring to the University of Maryland where he was enrolled in summer school at the time of his accident. He had found a home with the Maryland sailing team, serving as the team's Commodore his junior year and Social Director the year before. He had a passion for sports, especially soccer, which included playing for Covenant, and for the Soccer Organization of Charlottesville Albemarle for 11 years. He also loved skiing, wakeboarding, and sailing, and was happiest on the water and the snow. He was involved in the Blue Ridge Double Cross, which directly supports the adaptive ski program at Wintergreen, helping those with special needs. His logical approach to learning served him well as a gifted computer technician and problem solver; he built himself and family members many computers from scratch and served as troubleshooter for many others. Having just received his clearance to work for Helm Point Solutions, he was on the launch pad for a wonderful future. As was evident by his final days in the SICU and his celebration service, he was deeply loved by his many friends and family members. He leaves a Jeremy-sized hole in the hearts of all who knew and loved him.

On December 19, 2010, Jeremy’s family and friends attended the University of Maryland College of Computer, Mathematical, and Physical Sciences graduation ceremony where he was posthumously awarded a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science.