Jennifer Mary Stift was born to Michael and Monica Stift on January 24, 1997. She was tragically taken from us Monday, August 18, 2014. She had four older sisters Samantha, Katie, Michelle, and Becky.
Jenny had the advantages and disadvantages of being the youngest of five sisters ~ where Jenny's life was filled with an abundance of love. Not only did her parents spoil her, her sisters did as well. She had her selection of new, as well as, plenty of hand-me-down clothes and yes, her sisters teased her, but she was the baby of the family who was also greatly loved and protected.
Jenny was baptized at St. Clare's Catholic Church and attended services and CCD classes at Blessed (now Saint) Kateri Tekakwitha Catholic Church where she made her First Communion and later her Confirmation. She was a graduate of Bouquet Canyon Elementary and Arroyo Junior High School. She was just beginning her Senior year at Saugus High School.
Jenny was involved in many interests, activities, and sports in the Santa Clarita, CA community over her short life. Beginning in grammar school she was involved in Brownies and then Girl Scouts (where her Mom acted as leader for both many times). A favorite sport of hers was soccer and, following in three of her older sister's (Katie, Michelle and Becky) footsteps, she was on many girls AYSO soccer teams and later some AYSO Tournament soccer teams. She loved playing soccer very much.
During Jen's Junior High school years and following in two of her older sister's (Samantha & Michelle) footsteps, she developed an interest in competitive swimming. When she entered Saugus High School she joined and competed on the swim team. During her SHS Junior year Jen required hip surgery that curtailed her competitive spirit somewhat. But Jen's SHS spirits still ran high as she remained SHS Swim Team Manager. Focusing on long-term healing and exercise, Jen was hoping to swim competitively again in this, her Senior year.
Jenny's parents taught her to be kind to all and apparently she listened as she had many, many friends. She maintained friendships from grammar school, CCD, Brownies, Girl Scouts, AYSO soccer, SHS, and SHS Swim Team and made new friends along the way all through her high school years. Even if Jenny wasn't actively involved, she made many friends in other activities or sports such as the SHS Dance Team. Her sister Katie once told her "Best Friend" was singular and not plural. But Jenny ignored that definition and decided she would have many best friends.
One of the joys in Jenny's life was her new nephew, Carson, who is her oldest sister's (Samantha) son. She had recently celebrated his 1st birthday and Aunti Jenny gave him the best hugs every chance she got.
Jenny's smile was infectious — she was a little goofy and had the ability to make others laugh (especially her sisters and friends), either by the funny faces she made (and photographed and shared) or the funny things that she said. Jenny loved the ocean and beach and she loved and had many photos of her friends, herself with her sisters, and herself with her friends. She was a confidant and Best Friend to many.
Jennifer Mary Stift was loved by many and will be deeply and especially missed by her Mom and Dad, her four sisters, all of her relatives, and her many, many, many friends. Jenny will always be in our minds, memories and hearts. "WE LOVE YOU JENNY!"
A Viewing will be held from 4-8:00 p.m. Thursday, September 4, 1914 at Eternal Valley Memorial Park Mortuary, 23287 N. Sierra Highway, Newhall, CA 91321; with a Rosary at 7:00 pm in the Chapel.
A Funeral Mass will be held at 10:00 a.m. Friday, September 5, 2014 at St. Kateri Tekakwitha Catholic Church, 22508 Copper Hill Dr, Santa Clarita, CA 91350; with Internment following at 11:30 a.m. at Eternal Valley.
A Memorial Service will be held at 1:00 p.m. at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, 27405 Bouquet Canyon Rd, Saugus, CA 91350; with a reception following at 1:30 p.m. at the Church.
News story: Teen Jogger Killed in Crash, 8-18-2014
Santa Clarita City Council Adjournment, Sept. 9, 2014
It is with great sadness that we adjourn tonight's City Council meeting in honor of a young life lost too soon.
Jennifer (Jenny) Stift was an athlete, a loving daughter and sister, and a joy to all who knew her. She was also the heart of the Saugus High School swim team.
Jenny was known for her ability light up a room with her smile. She packed more zest for life into 17 years than most do in a lifetime.
From an early age, Jenny was active in many clubs and sports in Santa Clarita. Growing up, she was a member of Brownies and Girl Scouts, and played on several AYSO girls soccer teams.
As a teen, she joined the Saugus High School Swim team. When a hip injury caused her to take a break from swimming, she stayed on as Team Manager.
This summer, Jennifer was excited to begin her Senior year at Saugus High School, and was looking forward to competing again on the swim team.
On the evening of August 18, Jenny was jogging in her neighborhood when she was struck by a motorist, and killed.
Our entire community was shocked by the news of Jenny's death, and deeply saddened by the loss of a young life so filled with hope and promise.
We hope Jenny's memory reminds all residents about the importance of being aware and focused behind the wheel. Most of all, we hope her story inspires others to live life to the fullest, just as she did.
Thousands of Jenny's friends and peers attended a candlelit vigil on August 20 to remember her.
It is clear that her memory and bright spirit will live on in the hearts of all who were lucky enough to know her.
Our deepest sympathies and most heartfelt prayers are with Jenny's parents, sisters, family and friends during this difficult time.
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