Jesse Lee Sparks

Angels Info

Name: Jesse Lee Sparks
Age: 34
Location: Madison, Wisconsin
DOD: July 23, 2016

Angels Bio:

MADISON – Jesse L. Sparks, age 34, of Madison, passed away on Monday, July 25, 2016, at his home, after fighting a courageous battle with heroin addiction. He was born on April 3, 1982, in Madison, the son of his beloved mumzie, Sherri L. Smith, and Randall Sparks. Jesse attended East High School and Monona Grove High School. He enjoyed gaming, fishing, RC racing and disc golf with his cousin, Chaynce. Jesse was a jokester and always made those around him feel good with his contagious smile and high energy.

Jesse is survived by his mom, Sherri L. Smith (Christopher Carlson); grandmother, Judith Weger; uncle, Richard A. Smith; cousins, Amanda Marie Smith, Chaynce and Zakari; great-aunt, Betty Summicht; and special friends, Greg Barrows, Eric and Tony “Shorty” and many more. He was preceded in death by his twin brother, Anthony “Tony” Sparks; sister, Candace Bark; and grandfathers, David Smith and James Weger.


Funeral services will be held at GUNDERSON EAST FUNERAL HOME, 5203 Monona Drive, Madison, at 11 a.m., on Saturday, July 30, 2016. Visitation will be held at the funeral home from 4 p.m. until 8 p.m., on Friday, July 29, 2016, and again from 10 a.m. until the time of the service on Saturday. A luncheon will be held on Saturday, from 1 p.m. until 3 p.m., at EAST SIDE ALANO CLUB, 1017 Northport Drive, Madison, where Jesse and his mom, Sherri, had attended their 12-Step Recovery Program together.

Substance abuse is not something to be ashamed of or hidden. It’s a disease that has to be brought into the light and fought by everyone. It takes our loved ones every day! Please do whatever you can to fight the disease so you never have to feel what every one of us, who has lost a loved one, is feeling right now. We all thank you for your condolences and prayers and ask that you continue to pray for Jesse’s soul, our family and those who still suffer. Our family cannot begin to express how much the outpouring of love and support we have received means to us.


Alex Thomas Zimmer

"Photo borrowed from Facebook via Laura McCauley Rankin "

Angels Info

Name: Alex Thomas Zimmer
Age: 27
Location: Tolland, Connecticut
DOD: July 23, 2016

Angels Bio:

Alex Thomas Zimmer, 27, of Tolland, died Saturday, July 23, 2016, as a result of a heroin overdose after 2½ years of sobriety.

Alex was born June 30, 1989, in Hartford.

Alex is survived by his mother, Laura Rankin and her husband, Eric, of South Windsor; his father, John Zimmer and his longtime companion, Cindy Eastman, of Windsor Locks. He also leaves his four brothers, Andrew Zimmer, Brendan Zimmer and his wife, Alena, Mark Zimmer, and Connor Rankin; and his four sisters, Amber Rankin, Erica Rankin, Alexis Rankin, and Lauren Rankin. Alex was adored by his aunt, Linda LaVallee, of Enfield; his uncle, Todd LaVallee, of Suffield; his uncle, Charlie McCauley and his wife, Kristin, of Vernon; his nephew, Liam; and his newest treasure, his niece, Margeaux. He also leaves his two cousins, Grace LaVallee and Ashley McCauley.

Alex had been working very hard for the past 2½ years to get his life on track and overcome this terrible addiction. The family requests that everyone spread the word of this horrific epidemic taking our children. Please talk to your children repeatedly about the danger of drug addiction.

His family will receive friends on Thursday, July 28, from 5 to 8 p.m., at Samsel & Carmon Funeral Home, 419 Buckland Road, South Windsor. A prayer service will follow at 8 p.m. in the funeral home. Burial will be private at the request of his family.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The Courage to Speak Foundation, 71 East Ave., Suite M., Norwalk, CT 06851.

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