Judith Fern Vitela was born in April 1982 and she passed away in December 2016.
Judy was selfless down to her core and her desire to donate her organs was only the tip of the iceberg in her life devoted to others. She lived every day in the details of giving and sharing with others. She was the type of person who entered a room without knowing a soul and walked out with a dozen new friends. She was also a true friend and when she was with you, you felt like you were her most important friend in the world.
She had a generous and caring soul. She fought for those who were in need or down on their luck. She cheered for the underdogs. She was always there for her friends and family. On more than one occasion, she gave the coat off her back to a person she just met because they didn’t have a coat of their own. That type of generosity was typical of her.
Judy was born in a border town in Texas. She was a first-generation Mexican-American. She loved America with her whole heart and yet never lost a sense of her roots. She spoke Spanish, as her first language, and taught other people to speak English. She loved listening to mariachi and keeping family traditions.
She was very active in life. She loved to do yoga, swim, run, dance and garden. Judy had a competitive side to her, whether it was cheering on her football team or racing one of her teenagers in the neighborhood pool. She loved being out with people and when she wasn’t out, she was inviting people over to our place to entertain.
Judy's love was being in the kitchen creating recipes and cooking for friends. She worked for an "Iron Chef" champion and had a particular love of working with chili peppers and spicy foods. Before making cooking her career, she worked in Washington, D.C. as legislative aid for a U.S. Senator. She had a degree in International Relations.
Before her passing, Judy had taken to the country life, moving to Idaho to pursue farming with the intent of opening a farm-to-table restaurant. She truly loved nature and what she saw as the miracle of growing her own food. She passed away in her adopted home State of Idaho.
Judy is proud to have donated her organs. She spoke often of her desire to be an organ donor. Her family takes great comfort that her will to participate in this great program was made a reality. Knowing that Judy’s generosity in life extended beyond her earthly years is the perfect legacy and testament to who she truly was.