BURLINGTON — Our beautiful Jen. Over thirty years ago you started down a path that ended in now. We’re sure you didn’t know the danger, or the years of pain you would endure, when you took that first pill. You were just a teenager, looking for a reprieve from the pain of life.

In the early 1990s, we didn’t want to talk about those pills. You were the problem, even though you were just a kid. You were to blame for not having the strength to battle the drugs designed to addict you. You were weak for not conquering the demons that caged you. You lost close friends and family, and those losses sunk you further into the sadness that kept you hooked.

You struggled. For years. And by the time treatment was readily available and you could stop living in the shadow of your addiction, your life had irreparably changed. Gone was your dream of being a teacher and living in a house with children and a white picket fence. Opiates had stressed your relationships, stolen your friendships and destroyed your life.

But here’s what opiates didn’t take. Your ineffable kindness. Your deep-seated goodness. Your huge heart (which was way too big for your 5’2” frame). Your infectious laugh. The hilarious way you didn’t get half the jokes we told you. The not-so-hilarious way you drove a car. Your hugs that made us feel like the most loved people on the planet. Your sense of style and knack for dressing like a million bucks on a zero budget. Your beautiful long brown curly hair. And your love for your family, especially for Jeff and your nieces and nephew.

Some will say that an obituary shouldn’t be the place for commentary on the opiate crisis. But you are a casualty of that crisis. You wouldn’t have died but for opiates and we wouldn’t be writing this if it wasn’t for the drug companies who made billions off addicting people exactly like you. You join the thousands of Vermonters who have lost their lives to their greed. This isn’t to say you weren’t responsible for your actions. You were. But the drug companies are complicit in your death. When they knowingly sell a poison that alters people’s brains and impairs their ability to make good decisions, they are as responsible as the people who take that poison.

You will be deeply missed by your parents, John and Deanna Edwards of St. Albans, your sister, Wendy L. Fuller of St. Albans and your brothers, Matthew C. Fuller of Clayton, NC, Jeffrey Fuller of Craftsbury, VT, and Jonathan Edwards of Stuart, FL. Norah, Asa and Addie will forever remember their Aunt Jenny, and all of your aunts, uncles and cousins, especially Lisa Paige, will miss you and mourn your journey through this life.

We hope you have found peace and are finally reunited with Dad, a man you grieved every single day for the past 37 years. Rest easy Jen. We will always love you.

Our family welcomes you to join us at the Goss Life Celebration Home, 89 Grand Avenue, Swanton, on Sunday, April 18, 2021 from 2-4 p.m. A private burial will follow. In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation in Jen’s name to a place she loved: Turning Point of Burlington, 179 South Winooski Ave, Suite 301, Burlington, VT 05401, or online at www.turningpointcentervt.org.

Goss Life Celebration Homes is the area’s exclusive provider of Life Celebration events. Please visit our website to share condolences, photos and favorite memories at www.gossfs.com

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