From the January 25th posting of Pastor John's Blog an update:
Another tremendous blessing was the recent purchase of “Jason’s tractor.” It is not new but is a solid “used” tractor that will be very helpful on our woodlot and will be invaluable for other various needs. Thank you to all who gave designated donations for this project.
From Pastor John's Message* (April 2017)
Our board has asked me to make a special appeal for an important need for our farm. We have some land that requires cultivation every spring, for the planting of various crops.
We are in need of a new tractor, but since they are rather expensive, we are seeking to buy a used one in good condition. It will also need a front-loader which will be utilized for our woodlot. A conservative cost estimate for the tractor is about $20,000.
It will be called, “Jason’s Tractor,” in honor of Jason Gould, who passed away tragically at 23 years of age. Jason primarily loved six things in life: His family and friends, the outdoors, farming, animals, the homeless and Jesus. He had a special place in his heart for the homeless, and enjoyed spending time on our farm.
It is our hope you will give generously, in Jason’s memory, for the purchase of this important farm tool that will prove to be invaluable to our mission. On behalf of our board, we thank you in advance. And please know, we are very grateful for every dollar invested in Albany Helping Hands.
May You Have a Blessed Easter Celebration,
Pastor John E. Leon, Executive Director, Albany Helping Hands
March 30, 2017 | Jim Sapp
I knew Jason Gould since he was a child. Jason had autism but was also an extrovert. He had unstoppable enthusiasm for the homeless, the hurting and people in need. He gave food, sleeping bags, tools (from his Mom). He loaded up his truck and took people to fellowship who needed Jesus.
Everything he did was all out. Someone commented at his funeral that he was an Alpha Male. Jason loved the homeless, music, tractors and equipment.
He worked hard to help at the Albany Helping Hands Garden. He volunteered a lot at both shelters in town and played guitar in the worship band.
Along the way in his quest for friends, he tried to help a homeless young couple with young children by letting them move in.
The couple brought trouble with them, illegal drugs. Like everything else in life, he went all in. It didn't take long for prison to follow where Jason was placed by DOC with a high alert inmate who tragically murdered him.
Jason had decided much earlier, with his heart for giving, to be an organ donor. Because of his organ donations, five people live on through his death.
Because of all that happened, Jason's murderer genuinely gave his life to Jesus Christ even though he will live out that life in prison.
Jason's family and loved ones traveled to his hearing in Eastern Oregon and read letters of forgiveness to him in Court. The content of the letters greatly affected the Judge and state court officials.
At one recent Friday evening bible study Jason's Mom, Lynn, came to me and said she would like to help the shelter with $1000.00 gift to use any way we wanted in Jason's memory.
We have decided on a Tractor Fund in Jason Gould’s name.
Please see article from Pastor John for more details on the tractor fund.
Jim Sapp, Chairperson, Albany Helping Hands Board of Directors