Brooke Folkman

Obituary of Brooke Folkman

On Friday, May 25, 2018, Brooke Neva Folkman, daughter, sister, girlfriend, grandchild, aunt and animal lover returned to heaven at age 23. She passed away at home, peacefully in her sleep.

 

From her birth in Albuquerque, New Mexico on May 10, 1995 till her last breath, Brooke spread love to all people and every living creature upon this earth! As a child she was full of energy and passion. You could find her outside catching bumblebees or befriending toads. She owned (literally) hundreds of pets throughout her life. She and her Daddy shared a deep love for reptiles.

 

One Christmas she surprised him with a baby caiman crocodile, which they both found great joy in raising. Throughout her life she had a special passion for pet snakes, bearded dragons, rats, frogs, hedgehogs, horses, and especially dogs. From her earliest years, she loved to bring home injured wild animals and nurse them back to health, including large birds, owls, bunnies, snakes, lizards, a wounded pelican, and even a little fawn which she found after it had been hit by a car (yes, she loaded it up into the back of her vehicle and drove it home).

 

The animals that brought her the greatest joy in life were her dogs. She was inseparable from the family miniature poodle, Princess, from the time she could walk. This joy continued when we added two Yorkie-poos to our family, Millie and Chloe. Two years ago as she was suffering with increased mental health challenges she felt the strong need for a service dog. She had a very spiritual experience which led her to her beloved Bernedoodle, Indie. Over the past two years Indie has been Brooke’s constant companion and best friend; going everywhere with Brooke - to school, therapy, shopping, visiting friends or family, she was always at Brooke’s side. Indie is completely devoted to Brooke in every way. What joy Brooke and Indie brought to one another’s lives.

 

Throughout her life Brooke excelled in music and art. Her lively piano playing would fill our home with happiness and joy. She had the innate ability to sightread difficult piano pieces and was drawn to energetic, joyful music. She particularly enjoyed playing LDS hymns and Jon Schmidt’s compositions, including Waterfall, All of Me and Tribute. Her fingers would fly across the keys as we would sit and savor her performances in awe and wonder. She also enjoyed playing the guitar, and singing. Peaceful music played at her bedside each night as she slept.

 

Brooke loved creating beautiful artwork. At age 12 she began taking private art lessons. In high school she started oil painting and continued to create exquisite paintings throughout her life. What treasures these pieces are to us now! She had unique patience for pen and ink drawings, which she would spend hours on and create gorgeous and original works of art. In more recent years her passion has become stress-relief coloring books. She would sit for hours at our round family room table, creating beautiful works of art which she would give as gifts to those she loved. Every Sunday you could find her sitting in church with her coloring book, which helped her better focus on the beautiful messages she loved listening to. Her artwork is beautiful and had a wonderful calming affect in her life.

 

A strong theme throughout Brooke’s life was her love of Jesus Christ. While attending American Heritage Elementary School in American Fork, Utah, she memorized The Living Christ. These words were etched upon her heart for the rest of her life. For the next 12 years Brooke could recite The Living Christ at will. In her Patriarchal Blessing she was admonished to memorize the entire first chapter of James from the Bible. She took this admonition to heart and memorized it within one week, and could recite it for ever after. She had many scriptures memorized and found great comfort and solace in The Word of God. Her heart was set upon Him. She suffered much in this life due to increasingly difficult mental health challenges. She found great comfort, hope and peace through Jesus Christ, and came to know him personally through the depths of her suffering. We find great comfort knowing that she is now in His loving arms, free from the devastating health challenges she so bravely endured in this life.

 

In 2013 Brooke graduated from San Ramon Valley High School, in Danville, California. During this time she also attended four years of early morning church seminary and was a LDS Seminary Graduate. After graduating early at age 17, she started school at Brigham Young University, Provo. She was most recently a student at Utah Valley University, studying Communications. Brooke loved learning. She was very gifted intellectually, blessed with a quick, bright mind and amazing ability to memorize information.

 

Brooke had a quick whit and a delightful sense of humor. She loved to tease and she loved to make people laugh. She was an adventurous soul. Her Instagram name is “wildchildbrooke,” referring to her love of the wild outdoors. At age 16, she spent several months backpacking in a wilderness program where her passion for nature blossomed. During this time she developed a great love for hummingbirds, which became a symbol of God’s love for her. Her sister Rachel was also able to come guide a week with Brooke during this time, which further bonded their love and understanding for one another.

 

She loved spending time in canyons and on mountains, especially with her beloved sweetheart Guillermo, and their dog Indie. She was very athletic, excelling on the soccer field in her teens. She loved road biking, skiing, wake-boarding (especially at Lake Powell), riding motorcycles or taking Jeep rides with her Daddy. She had a love of the ocean and all sea creatures. She loved snorkeling, boogie-boarding and paddle boarding. Near the ocean she was especially passionate about swimming with the sea turtles, catching lizards, crabs, starfish, pelicans, and toads (which she would keep for a few days before releasing). Connecting with all living creatures brought Brooke immense joy!

 

Brooke and her Mommy had the special opportunity to go on a Humanitarian Trip to Fiji through HEFY the summer of 2013. They spent three weeks working in a small village digging holes, mixing and pouring cement, working to build an outdoor toilet for a Fijian family, whom they grew to deeply love. They also grew to love the group of youth and leaders with whom they served.

 

Brooke loved to travel. She particularly loved trips to the beach. She enjoyed many treasured family vacations on Myrtle Beach, the Gulf of Florida, Mexico, Santa Cruz, Laguna Beach, Stinson Beach, and a cruise to the Caribbean. She particularly loved exploring Maui and Kauai, Hawaii. She ran wild and free along the beaches, splashing in the cool ocean waters. She found such joy in sharing these happy times with her family.

 

Brooke devoted her life to her family. Throughout her life family was of upmost importance to her. She felt a special bond with her daddy with whom she shared so many interests and passions. She adored her mother and could not stand to be far from her side for very long. She had a unique and special bond with each of her three sisters. They were her best friends. There is no place she would rather be than hanging out, playing games, enjoying family dinners or vacationing with her family. Her brother-in-law James adored her and became the big brother she’d never had. Yet, above us all, her darling little nephew, Malan Jeppe held her heart! She adored Malan and wanted to spend as much time playing with him and enjoying him as she could. The great desire of her heart was to marry her sweetheart and start a family of their own.

 

In October of 2015, Brooke met the Love of Her Life, her fiance, Guillermo Luis Bustamante Simosa. She and Guillermo have shared the sweetest, most pure of all loves. They have shared over two years of wonderful adventures together. They love to take Indie to the dog park, enjoy long drives up American Fork canyon, have bonfires, organize fun movie nights and game nights with their friends. They enjoy spending time with their families and looking for ways to serve and lift those they love. Guillermo has loved Brooke with the most Christlike love imaginable. He cherished her and treated her like the Queen she was. She adored him and longed to be near him as much as possible. Together they filled our home with love and laughter! We will forever be grateful for our precious Guillermo. Just two weeks ago, on Brooke’s 23rd birthday, she expressed that her birthday wish for the year was to be sealed in the LDS temple to Guillermo by her next birthday. When Brooke was with Guillermo, she felt whole and complete.

 

Brooke clung to her faith through debilitating trials. She never stopped fighting the battles she faced over the course of her life. She had the greatest empathy for any suffering soul and the kindest listening ear. Her brief, yet deep and meaningful, mortal journey was full of joy and so much love, light and laughter! We find great peace knowing that our precious Brooke is now in the arms of Jesus, free from the pain and suffering she endured in this mortal body. Brooke undoubtedly knows how dearly loved she is. To know Brooke is to love her.

 

Left to remember Brooke’s love are her parents Brett Alan Folkman and Sandy Lee Thurgood Folkman; her three sisters Rachel Lee Folkman, Rebekah Ruth Folkman, Natasha Christina Folkman Jackson, brother-in-law James Robert Jackson, and her beloved nephew Malan Jeppe Jackson; her loving fiance Guillermo Louise Bustamante-Simosa; her devoted service dog Indie; her grandparents, David Izatt Folkman Jr. (deceased) and Donna Ruth Sexsmith Folkman, Kent Joseph Thurgood and Trudy Lee Spear Thurgood, Great Grandparents Jay Henry Spear (deceased) and Ruby Lee Maynes Spear; she is blessed with numerous aunts, uncles and cousins, sister’s boyfriend’s, and friends who adored her and brought her incalculable joy.

Cases 

Funeral services will be held Friday, June 1, 2018 at 11 AM at the Highland 39th Ward, 11605 North 6000 West.  A viewing will be held Thursday from 6-8 PM at Anderson & Sons Lone Peak Chapel, 6141 West 11000 North, Highland and Friday from 9:30 to 10:30 am prior to the services at the church.  Burial in the Highland cemetery.

 

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be sent to your favorite charity supporting animals in memory of Brooke, who’s love of animals was boundless.

 

We love you our sweet Brooke! May you find much peace and happiness playing with animals and dancing through the wildflowers in Heaven.

 

 

To listen to Brooke's service recording click on the play button below this obituary.