“Holding people up and together” – Reflecting on Jason Stubby

By Kristin Troyer – Horizon Editor-in-Chief

A Hesston College alumnus was one of three victims in a Newton homicide in the early morning of Feb. 23.

Jason Stubby, a 2013 graduate of the nursing program, was pronounced dead at the scene along with two other men.

Stubby graduated from Burrton High School in 1999 and came to Hesston as a nontraditional student in the nursing program. While at Hesston, he became close and special friends with Psychology faculty, Kevin Wilder.

“I remember him smiling and nodding at me from the top right corner of my classes with his big grin and having conversations with him before and after class,” Wilder said. “He was a gentle, easy-going, and caring person.”

Bonnie Sowers, Nursing Education Director, identified the similarities Stubby shared with his father, Rick, a 1993 nursing program graduate.

Stubby receives his pin at his graduation ceremony. Photo by Larry Bartel

Nursing faculty Bonnie Sowers remembered Stubby’s father, 1993 nursing program graduate Rick Stubby, and the positive qualities they shared. Like his father, Stubby kindly cared for his patients, was gentle and patient with the elderly, and liked a good challenge in clinicals.

Nursing faculty Becky Bartel affirmed Stubby’s kind and quiet demeanor.

“He never wanted to be the center of attention, but was a friend to anyone who crossed his path,” Bartel said. “Jason was never a front row kind of guy but someone who liked to do things quietly and behind the scenes, quietly holding people up and together.”

Stubby had a presence outside just the nursing program.

“In a world where I pass many people on a regular basis, there are those that stand out as a focused, comfortable presence – one that I looked forward to being around,” said English faculty Karen LeVan. “That was Jason Stubby as I remember him.”

Stubby’s funeral was Feb. 28 in Newton.

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