Julia Nancy Perkins was a jalapeno lover, philosopher and animal lover extraordinaire, and embodied the candle that burns twice as brightly, but burns half as long. At just 39, she died of a brain seizure on Friday, August 23, 2019 at her finance's home in Denver.
Julia was as feisty as she was gentle, as full of wonder as wisdom, her sense of humor was dark, but she believed in fairies. Julia was quick to laugh and easily reduced to hysterics by the simplest things. Her wit and sense of irony found humor in every day life.
She had a Philosophy/Art History major but would name every item she ever owned. Julia named a car Obily, a stuffed hippo, Buttercup, and blanket named Bumbles. She also loved dragon flies and cephalopods. She had an aversion to shoes, bananas, whip cream, food with eyes, berries because of seeds in her teeth. She created a colorful language all her own. From a young age she called her father “Bob”.
Julia was born September 10, 1979 in Denver, Colorado to Margaret and Dave Perkins. She grew up in Denver, Colorado and attended the Waldorf school, Havern School, Bell Middle School, Green Mountain High School (for one horrid year) then graduated from Jefferson County Open School. Julia earned an Associates Degree in Liberal Arts from Red Rocks Community College; BA degree from Denver University in Philosophy and Art History and graduated summa cum caude. This was through her dogged tenacity and fierce love of learning in spite of dealing with the challenge of dyslexia.
Julia traveled many summers to her mother's place of origin on the east coast to the family farm. She traveled extensively in high school and later in college with art history courses to Europe. Because of her love of the sea she enjoyed multiple trips to the California coast to interface with the sea lions.
When Julia was 20 years old and attending Red Rocks Community College, a fire broke out at home while she and younger brother, Sean were asleep. With her mother out of town and her “Bob” at work, she awoke to the smell of smoke. She quickly woke her brother and together they crawled out of the house to neighbors for safety. Later, while working at Kindercare, she responded to another emergency by saving the life of a choking toddler.
During her formative and adolescent years, she was active in the Jefferson Unitarian Youth Group as a district representative, traveling the western United States in that position. Julia made a bucket list early in life and fulfilled one of those goals by meeting the recently retired President Ronald Reagan. She challenged herself by backpacking and participating in Outward Bound off the coast of Maine. She repelled off cliffs in the dark, jumped into 50-degree sea water every morning and gained a new found confidence.
Julia had jobs starting in high school by merchandising at Natural Grocers, as a babysitter and at various retail outlets. She became a director at Kindercare, eventually taking on two centers and winning multiple regional awards. She then moved into a Pier 1 management position at multiple stores. At last she found her love of caretaking of disabled adults through managing an ARC store then contracting for and later private clients needing her care. Julia loved the disabled population just the way they are. She mentioned many times how authentic they are.
Wherever Julia lived, she always found a place to garden. She made every house or apartment a warm and inviting home. Julia adopted or fostered a dog at every residence. At age 12, Julia read Sinclair Upton's The Jungle about the meat packing industry and never ate anything with a face ever again. But, still had taco Tuesday with soy crumbles and doctored every meal with several types of hot sauce or whatever hot spice was available. She investigated all Sub Sandwich shops for veggie subs.
Julia was a Mafia history buff, a pool shark, a poker player and teller of morbid jokes. Her favorite holiday was Halloween. She loved doing laundry and explaining all the art in the Denver Art Museum to her mom. She was a New England Patriots fan, much to the chagrin of her “Bob” (dad). Julia was artistic; every envelope for every occasion was decorated, with her homemade cards. She loved to run and ran the Bolder Boulder. Julia collected unique large nuts and bolts. She also loved children and changed innumerable diapers in her life while always entertaining the recipient.
Julia had a touching relationship with her siblings – brother Sean and sister Lesa, sista-cuz Beth.They were her friends as well. She was an instigator of mischief, such as the time she convinced her siblings to awaken Mom and “Bob” on Christmas day with a resounding concert of banging wooden spoons on all available pots and pans. However, it was her sista-cuz, Beth, who taught her how to slide down the stairs in laundry baskets.
Julia is survived my her Dad, “Bob”; her Ma, Meg, brother, Sean, sister, Lesa; Sista-cuz, Beth Brown; nephew, David; Cousins, Mark, Susan, Gary, Garrett and Jacqueline Brown; fiance' Gary Bradley and his sweet son Benjamin.
In lieu of flowers please make donations to:
NAMI Jeffco or
P O Box 1921
Arvada, CO 80001
Foothills Animal Shelter
580 McIntyre St.
Golden, CO 80401