Bruce, the eldest child, was 21. After the death of their parents, the Watsons relocated to Southwest Virginia. Ella transferred to a local public school, Bruce and Susan attended Virginia Tech, and Jen enrolled at Radford University, about 25 minutes away. Jen had a great time in college, and attempted to experience as much as possible both on and off campus...
Ella's donor will be her older sister, Jen Watson, who is eight years older than her, but most people think that they are the same age. Jen was born in Bethesda, MD and grew up in Fairfax, VA. As a young girl, Jen was played softball, was in the Girl Scouts and had a fascination with Star Wars that has transcended adulthood.
Jen attended Paul VI High School, were she was very popular among her peers as a vivacious, optimistic person. During her Junior year, her mother, Susan Watson died from an allergic reaction to Demerol and Valium that was administered during an endoscopy. The following year, her father, Bruce Watson, died of Pulmonary Fibrosis as a result of Sarcoidisis. At that time Ella was nine, Jen was 18, Susan was 19 and
Jen is a vibrant beautiful woman who lights up a room everywhere she goes. She is charasmatic and excited about life and its possibilities. Jen always tries to find the silver lining in life's ironic twists, making the best of the worst situations. She is as hard of a worker as they come, devoting herself to her job while also constantly seeking out and refining her personal joys. She works hard and plays hard.
She is a constant devourer of life, not just somebody who watches it go by, but someone who takes an active role in engaging it. Her willingness to donate her liver to her little sister is a shallow example of this fact.
Jen loves to eat, drink and be merry (although not with the drink anymore). She loves fine chocolate and has been known to eat massive quantities of Godiva in her sleep. She has an insatiable love for good food and good fashion. She has a daring, yet contemporary style. While she is a female as they come, there is a latent tomboy attitude especially apparent to those of us who know her best. She adores her dog, Drummond, a rescued English Bulldog who has been her best companion for a over 5 years. She is reminded of God's sense of humor every time she looks at him.
Jen is a force all her own. A wonderful thing about Jen is that as life changes, Jen is able to change with it. She recognizes that the the pursuit of becoming the best person she can be is also understanding that she will always be a work in progress.
She will be giving a greater portion of her liver to Ella on June 16, 2009 at New York Presbyterian Hospital.
She earned a Bachelor's of Fine Art in Art History and Museum Studies. After college, Jen briefly lived in Ft. Lauderdale, Salt Lake City, Costa Rica and Cape Cod. While living on Cape Cod, on a whim, she applied to the graduate program in the Department of History of Art and Architecture at Harvard University. To her surprise, she was immediately accepted. While completing her course work in Art History and Museum Studies, she was awarded a study fellowship at the Fogg Museum Art Museum in Curatorial Affairs.
After her time in the Boston/ Cambridge area, Jen made her way back to the Washington DC area where she was hired as Director of the Washington Printmakers Gallery. Her next move brought her to New York City, where she landed at Jim Kempner Fine Arts, and then on to PaceWildenstein. She is now at Barbara Gladstone Gallery, a premier New York contemporary art gallery. This has proved to be a great move for Jen, not only professionally but also personally. Gladstone has been generous in their support of Jen and her decision to be a living donor and have granted her the necessary time off for the surgery and recovery. Gladstone Gallery has helped to make it possible for the transplant to occur.
Jen is a vibrant beautiful woman who lights up
a room everywhere she goes