Jake was born on August 6, 1996 in Morristown, NJ to his parents, Cristine and Joe Byrne. Jake courageously fought a life-long battle with Friedreich’s Ataxia, a very rare neuromuscular disease. He graduated from Bridgewater High School with an honorary degree, despite his enormous challenges. Jake gradually lost his mobility, but remained an active thinker with an incredible sense of humor.
Jake was an avid sports fan who loved the Philadelphia Eagles and WWE, and was able to meet many of those athletes. Jake was also a video game whiz. He so enjoyed spending time with his family and especially his three nephews. He was a very handsome and happy young man who had a smile that lit up the room. His sharp wit brought joy to everyone who met him. Jake’s unstoppable optimism, strength, and endurance, despite his disabilities, will remain an example of the unbreakable human spirit. Rarely are we fortunate enough to meet a person like Jake. We are humbled and are better people for having known him.
Jake is survived by his mother, Cristine Byrne of Raritan, NJ, and father, Joe Byrne of Garwood, NJ; his brother Nicolas Weisenforth, his sister Amanda Byrne, his paternal grandfather and many aunts, uncles, cousins and three nephews whom he adored. Jake also leaves behind numerous loving friends, doctors, nurses, and staff at Children’s Specialized Hospital in Mountainside, NJ and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Jake will live on in the hearts of those who loved him.
There will be a mass on Saturday, July 8, at 9:30 at Immaculate Conception 35 Mountain Ave. in Somerville, NJ. Friends and family are welcome to meet with Jake’s parents before mass at 9:00 am.
A celebration of Jake's life will be held at Season's 52 at the Bridgewater Mall at 11:00am. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to FARA (Friedreich’s Ataxia Research Alliance www.curefa.org or 533 W.Uwchlan Ave. Downingtown, PA) or Make a Wish at Nj wish.org in Jake's name.