Obituaries

Jenessa Jenae Hlad, 19, passed away unexpectedly on the afternoon of Friday, July 24, 2015, while visiting a friend in Tyler, Texas after her body was overcome by a septic infection.  Jenessa was born on Oct. 14, 1995 in Salina, Kan., to Randy and Beth Hlad. She lived all her life in Sylvan  Grove, and attended Sylvan-Lucas Unified High School. She was a rising jun - ior at Tabor College in Hillsboro, Kan., where she was studying Athletic Training.  Jenessa was not a “relig - ious” person: she had a per - sonal relationship with Jesus. Christ was her core; her anchor in the storms and waves of life. Her rela - tionship with Christ was personal, close, and chosen. She loved spending time with her family, especially her niece and nephew. Jenessa was the “practical” and “decisive” one of the family; yet known for being hilarious. She would make jokes unwittingly, and then crack up afterwards as she realized the joke. She was often heard to say that she “cracked herself up.” Jenessa was a loyal and devoted friend . While it took her a while to warm up to people, once you were her friend, you were truly her friend. Her circles included people of all ages and walks of life, and were from all over the country.  As one friend said, she was spunky, sporty, tal - ented, and beautiful. She loved puppies, and had recently adopted a Rottweiler mix puppy named Max. She loved sports, and played volley -  ball, basketball, softball, and cheered. She was passionate about the athletic training program at Tabor, and loved her role supporting the athletes, especially the  football team. Jenessa loved music, and had a God-given gift for playing piano. She had a great appreciation for all kinds of music, but loved playing Christmas songs the best. She had a thirst for knowl - edge, and was well known in the Sylvan schools. She was a fast learner; dedi - cated, and smart. Starting at the age of 3, she walked the halls of the schools, drag - ging her blue blankie behind. The school was her home away from home, and everyone there knew and  loved her. She was her brother Tyler’s “right hand man” in his fence building business. She was a hard worker, and a perfectionist. According to Tyler, “she never com - plained and could work harder and better than any high school boy.” After her death, friends posted tributes on Facebook, testifying to the impact that she had made in their lives. “You changed me into a better person,” wrote Jared Slavens. “I was blessed to have you in my life.” Her friend, Bianca Broeckelman, says: “If there was one thing that I have to choose to take away from being so close to Jenessa, it would be her blessing me with her pres - ence, her loyalty, her con - tagious laughter, her beau - tiful smile, and most of all, her blessing me with not only being my best friend, but also by becoming part of my family and always being there when I needed her most. With that, I am truly blessed.” Drake Bailey wrote, “She touched many lives, including mine, and I know her life has left an impact that will echo end - lessly into mankind.” She is survived by her parents, Randy and Beth Hlad; sister, Elisa Agler (and her husband Donnie); brothers, Benjamin and  Tyler (and his wife Angela); nephew, Micah; niece, Emma; paternal grandpar - ents, Ron and Jane Hlad; maternal grandparents, John and Betty Dickson; and many aunts, uncles, and cousins. Services were held at the Sylvan-Lucas Unified Gymnasium on Wednesday, July 29, at 11:00 a.m., and officiated by Reverend Jon  Harvey and Reverend Don Michaelsen. Interment at Wilson City Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the Hlad family requests that memorial donations be made to Tabor College Athletic Training. Those who would like to assist the Hlad family finan - cially can donate via GiveForward: http://bit.ly/ jenessahlad or deposit  funds directly into the Bennington State Bank/ Sylvan “Jenessa Hlad Benevolent Fund.”