Honoring Chris

“Chris, thanks for sharing laughter below the stars and shining love from life beyond them.” 

Jan Jenkins      

Well-known for his vibrant spirit, kind heart, talent on the lacrosse field and intelligence in the classroom, Chris Jenkins was the kind of friend you could depend on at anytime, anywhere, for any reason. 

Chris lives on in the hearts of his family, friends, and tens of thousands around the globe who were inspired by his life. 

"What you leave behind is not what is engraved in stone monuments, but what is woven into the lives of others." Pericles

Chris’s Legacy

“We can’t change what happened. All we can do is love each other more.”  Steve Jenkins | Chris’s dad

“Never leaving one of our own behind may not have been the easy path; but for us it was the only path.” Sara Jenkins Lightner | Chris’s only sibling and best friend

Click here | Dateline NBC's Solve My Mystery | Chris Jenkins

Click here | Slideshow with music Chris gave Steve on Father's Day 2002

Chris's story: Footprints of Courage: Our Family's Struggle for Justice

Click here to purchase Footprints of Courage from author through amazon (signature, customized message, bookmark, and lowest price for a new book on amazon).

Kindle version also available at amazon.com.

Click here | what people are saying after reading Footprints of Courage  

“I was unable to put the book down for any length of time; it pulled at me. Jan’s writing is honest and personal. This book educates from a place of experience Every young person needs to read the book and analyze the way they take care of their friends and vice versa. I wish I had had the honor of knowing Chris Jenkins because you cannot read his story without loving him. This book will surely save lives.”

Marnie Martin | Professional Consultant  | Amazon.com comment

Chris’s Legacy | at a glance

Christopher Jenkins | born February 17, 1981 | Mound, Minnesota

Eden Prairie youth baseball & football league | 1988-1996

Member of MN State High School Football Champions | 1997 & 1998

Member of MN State High School Football Runner up | 1999

Graduated | Eden Prairie High School | 1999

University of MN Men's Lscrosse | All-American goalie | 2000, 2001 & 2002

University of MN Men's Lacrosse Two-time team captain & vice president | appointed by team

Two-time recipient | Academic All-American | University of MN

MVP Goalie Award | Upper Midwest Lacrosse League | May 2002

Men’s Lacrosse Hall of Fame | Chris Jenkins 1st  inductee | University of MN | November 2013

MISSING | November 1, 2002

Chris’s body found | Mississippi River | February 27, 2003

Chris’s #3 retired | University of MN | February 2003

Receives business degree posthumously | University of MN’s Carlson School of Management | March 2003

Twin Cities 5K | We Will Never Forget | hundreds of runners/walkers for Chris |2005-2009, 2012


Chris’s story | featured on Dateline, Good Morning America, The Today Show, People Magazine & many others

Dedication to Chris | inscribed in Twins Tradition Wall at Target Field | Minneapolis | August 2009

Footprints of Courage | published | October 2009

Footprints of Courage | 2nd edition & e-book | published | August 2010

Blessing & Dedication | Chris Jenkins’s Footprints of Courage Memorial Trail at Spirit in the Pines Camp | Hackensack, MN | August 2011

11th Annual | Chris Jenkins’s Lacrosse Invitational | University of MN | TCF Stadium | April 2006-2017

Men’s Lacrosse Hall of Fame | Chris Jenkins 1st  inductee | University of MN | November 2013

Memorial Fund 

Jan and Steve Jenkins have a simple mission: Save Lives. Awaken Hope. In order to commemorate their exceptional son, brother, grandchild, nephew, friend and remarkable young man, they have set up the Chris Jenkins Memorial Fund. 

After losing their extraordinary 21-year-old son, Chris, to a senseless murder, Jan and Steve came face to face with the real dangers in the streets, schools, and on college campuses. 

They now work together to: 

Serve as community leaders in promoting safety, especially for young adults. 

Inspire others to become courageous leaders in building safe, energizing and healthy families, schools, campuses and communities. 

Offer hope to families who wake up one day to learn their child has disappeared. 

In deciding how to use the money in the fund, the following factors are considered: 

  • Alignment with the mission 
  • Honoring what was important to Chris 
  • Maximizing value 
  • Long-term benefit