This is the quilt of Jerry Wayne Fletcher. It is a quilt that is held by Names Foundation. If I had to describe it in three ways I would say that it’s eye-catching, memorable and vivid.
To begin with, the outdoor lining of the quilt is a silky ocean blue, that goes all the way around, in a rectangular notion. The full background is a type of denim or greyish blue with a tint of white. Let’s start at the top of the quilt. The top of the quilt strongly focuses on Alaska and mountaineering. At the top left, there is a badge with pearl white lining in a circular way. Inside there seems to be a white mountain, grass, a chalice and yellow lettering at the bottom and the top. Right below it, there is a white sign that has black lettering that says “Mt. McKinley non-ascent club charter member”. This then demonstrates that he was most likely apart of a type of mountaineering club at Mt. McKinley and he was one of the original founders. Although if you look right under that one as well it is a picture of Mr. Fletcher and it seems to be that he is a skier. Towards the middle right area there is a black and white picture of some mountains and right above it are capitalized gold letters that spell out ALASKA. Right below it is a yellow license plate that says ALASKA at the top and JERR at in the middle bottom. Towards the right of that, there is a red bandana, yet it is placed a bit under the black and white picture of the mountains and the license plate. Then all the way to the right in the top corner, there is a picture of whom I believe is Mr. Fletcher. He is standing and wearing a flannel shirt with dark jeans.
The middle section of the quilt. To begin with, it seems to be that what catches my eye the most is the large flannel shirt that is located in the very middle of the panel. When I saw it in person it I believe that it was one of his shirts that they personally gave and added on to the memorializing quilt. It is perfectly folded and fitted on to the small rectangular panel. It is a red and black flannel shirt. There is a picture of just him smiling and wearing a white shirt. Just below that picture is big bolded capitalized gold metallic letters that spell his name “FLETCH”. The letters are bordered and outlined in white. They are also popping out and look like they are soft and made out of a silky material. Just below the letters to the left are a pair of light pink suspenders. I would guess that they once belonged to him and just like the shirt, they were put there to make the quilt more personalized. The suspenders are of a light pink with a white patch in the middle and gold clasps at the ends. To the right of them, is another picture of Mr. Fletcher. In this picture, He seems to be with another person and looking down at something. It is lightly dimmed and he is wearing what it looks like a redshirt.
Finally, we look at the bottom of the quilt. This area is full of pictures of Mr. Fletcher. On the left, there is a picture of what I believe to be him. Yet in this picture, he looks to be wearing a blond wig and it looks like he has some makeup. He is wearing a green dress with what may be a pearl necklace. Right next to it is a picture of just him once again in which he is cooking and standing in the kitchen. He is wearing a blue shirt with white lettering and a white apron. Right under are two more pictures. The one closer to the left is a picture of his friend Nathan Jordan and himself. They are smiling and as it says below the picture in black sharpie lettering, they’re in the aids walk in Atlanta in the year ’92. I realize that on this picture Mr. Fletcher is also wearing the flannel red and black shirt that I talked about above and that they put onto the quilt. To the right is a picture of a man whom I’m not quite sure who it is but he is wearing a bathing suit in Cancun. All the way to the right are a total of three pictures left. The first one is a picture of Mr. Fletcher in which he is wearing some khaki pants and a blue shaded flannel shirt. He is smiling and holding a plate that could have been something he cooked. Next to that picture, is again another picture of him dressed up as a woman. He is wearing a white undershirt, with a blue and black patterned dress. He is wearing his blond wig again and has makeup, in which his eyes are heavily defined in black. He is wearing a headpiece with yellow feathers and a black and blue matching headpiece. The last picture is another one of him dressed up with the blond wig and in this, he is wearing a green, yellow, white and blue long dress. He is holding a drink and is smiling next to another person. That person is also dressed up and wears a white bottom with a very shiny and sparkly gold sequined jacket. A black curly wig and makeup on his eyes and red lipstick.
Lastly, to conclude, there is a label towards the bottom left. It is yellow with yellow/ gold threading bordering it. It states many things in dark black lettering which seems to have been done in sharpie. It says ” JERRY WAYNE FLETCHER… BLYTHEVILLE, ARK. ATLANTA, GA. 5.25.1949 – 6.8.1993. This seems to be his name, where he was born, died and the years in which he was born and died. The last thing on the quilt is a letter. It has a white background, blue lettering, and dark blue thread lining. This letter was written by his friend Rick. Saying…
“My dear, dear, friend,
A big chunk of my life is gone and there is a huge hole in my gut and my heart. All the days since we met in 1980 have been filled with laughter and with tears. With hopes and dreams, with lovers and without. So many memories come rushing back to me and so many more that I can’t remember… we were too drunk! Drunk on the speakers at the limelight. Drunk on the Chattahoochee, Drunk in Alaska, from Denali to Valdez. Drunk over Dallas and In Cancun. During the hurricanes. Stoned and drunk in key west! God, we drank a lot! Thankfully someone took pixs or we would have had many a lost weekend.
When you told me you were sick we held each other and cried. I said I would always be there for you even at the end but I really never thought that that could really happen. You weren’t supposed to die! You weren’t supposed to go and leave me with just these memories. They aren’t enough!
I light your candle every night and talk to you. I laugh aloud when I think of you and the duraflame log. I cry aloud when I think of your suffering.
I know that your spirit is with me (the scotch is disappearing for some reason) I hope you will stay with me as long as you can and when it is my turn to come to the light I hope you and Harry and Alton will be my guides. Your image may fade over time but your love and kindness shall always be with me.
Take care my friend and try to be a good hostess!
Love ya kid, Rick