Header image for Farewell to a Friend: Brett Jula

Farewell to a Friend: Brett Jula

Florida State University alumnus Brett Jula passed away on February 10, 2016 at the age of 29 following an automobile accident. A Sigma Nu brother and a 2011 graduate of FSU’s integrated marketing communication program, Jula was working as a district coordinator for Boston Beer Company in St. Louis, Missouri.

Jula ate, slept, drank and breathed FSU, and encouraged his family in Pittsburgh to do the same. He was a part of the Pittsburgh Seminole Club, through which he met Seth Beckman, a former associate dean of FSU’s College of Music.

Beckman shares, “He was an extraordinarily kind, loyal, funny, welcoming, intelligent fellow.”

Jula is survived by his parents, Mark and Susan Jula; his older brother, Chris Jula; his niece, Vivienne Jula; his aunts and uncles, Pete and Mary Ann Melnyk, Bill and Nancy Jula and Donna Cassidy and Tom Polito; numerous cousins, co-workers and friends; and his beloved golden retriever, Kendrick.

In high school, Jula played basketball with his brother under their father, who was the coach. The two helped bring the Center High School basketball team their first playoff win in 14 years in a WPIAL Class AA game with Nashannock High School. Jula scored 15 points, and his brother scored 17.

Jula was a huge sports fan and was a sports editor for both FSView and the Florida Flambeau. He was also the sports director for V89, FSU’s radio station. Dr. Misha Laurents, the station director of V89, has some kind and beautiful words regarding Brett:

“Brett worked in sports with WVFS for the duration of his time as an undergraduate at FSU, and his love of the ‘game’ is clear in his commitment to the station, his quality work as a reporter/anchor covering live events and helping host our weekly sports show Tomahawk Talk, and his willingness to debate sports anywhere, anytime, with anyone. Not only did I have the good fortune of working with Brett at V89, he also served with me as a Public Speaking lab instructor during his Master’s program in Communication. I just loved him! So kind and clever and funny! Other than his insightful and often hilarious observations and social media posts, two things about Brett have long stuck in my head – and give me a chuckle every time they come to mind: his hysterical and spot-on impression of Christopher Walken (too funny!) and his ‘excited to be here’ response (something he offered no matter the situation, and phrasing I have happily adopted ever since!). What a wonderful energy and presence!

It’s not just me that loved Brett! His friends and colleagues loved him and were charmed by him, too. He was a fantastically funny guy. Anyone who spent more than five minutes with him knows this. He was also super kind – a quiet kind that wasn’t always obvious, and for which he did not seek recognition or praise. Brett wrote thank you notes, called when he came to town, and extended himself in little and big ways that spoke loudly about his true character. He did the kinds of things that would make his parents even more proud than they already are, and for which they likely deserve a good bit of credit.

Brett was a genuinely lovely person, and losing him is the worst kind of heartache. The thoughts and healing wishes of the whole V89 family are with the Jula family now.”