Friends held a vegan potluck and dance party for Jaymie Rose Darrow Saturday night to celebrate her spirit. Darrow, a UCSB student died mysteriously while camping in her native San Diego County on July 19. Melissa Cohen, Darrow’s close friend and manager at the Isla Vista Food Co-Op hosted the party at her home, the “Pink Mailbox” house on 6668 Pasado Road in Isla Vista. It started at 6 p.m. and the dancing didn’t stop for another five hours. “It’s just what Jaymie would have wanted,” Melissa explained. “We wanted to celebrate her life, her spirit. It wasn’t a memorial service; it was an actual party.”
The party was intimate – about 30 people, most of whom worked at the Co-Op alongside Darrow. Guests ate the food that Darrow would have liked – all vegan – and the house was decorated with the things Darrow loved, from the bands she enjoyed to the hobbies she had. There were pictures of Darrow everywhere, as well as a memory book for guests to sign with messages for Darrow and stories that testified to the many lives she affected. Everyone dressed up in costumes-many 80s- or Michael Jackson-inspired. “We threw the party as if Jaymie was throwing it,” Cohen explained.
Nuno Sena, who taught a writing class Darrow took during her sophomore year, attended the bash with a gift of his own: the final paper she had written for the class – a testament to her academic talent – so her friends could read it. He joined the other guests in toasting Jaymie and even danced to Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.”
“It was the best party I’ve ever been to,” Cohen said. “Jaymie would have loved it. And that’s what matters.”