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Dolphins Announce Passing of Team Executive

The Miami Dolphins were stunned Saturday by the passing of team executive Jason Jenkins, a pillar in the South Florida community and one of the most visible members of the organization.

Head coach Mike McDaniel reflected the mood of the organization when he began his postgame press conference following the 48-10 victory against the Philadelphia Eagles by discussing Jenkins’ passing.

“You’re just going through the process and grieving with the team,” a visibly shaken McDaniel said. “I haven’t been here that long, but his investment into the team and the community, it didn’t take long to see the great work he did. I didn’t see a day, there wasn’t a time that he didn’t light up the room. Like I just told the team, it’s important for those who love him and were touched by him, all the members of our team to lean on each other. Our hearts are heavy, as they should be for an unquestionable professional that made his mark on not only the team but the National Football League.

“I thought their effort today reflected what would bring him joy.”

Dolphins Hall of Famer Jason Taylor also was emotional when talking about Jenkins at the start of the postgame show on South Florida television station WFOR.

“Jason was a good man, a kind soul,” Taylor said. “My heart breaks for Elizabeth and the three kids. This stuff (the game) means nothing. This puts it in perspective. We lost a good one. He was a good one, a great, great, great person.”

The Dolphins announced Jenkins’ death Saturday evening, not long after the start of the preseason finale against the Eagles.

This is how the press release read:

It is with profound sadness that the Miami Dolphins announce the passing of Jason Jenkins, Dolphins Senior Vice President of Communications and Community Affairs. He died suddenly on Saturday, August 27, 2022, leaving behind his wife, Elizabeth, and three beautiful children, an organization of people who are mourning his passing and a South Florida community which will forever bear his impact.

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“Our hearts are broken and grieving the loss of a man who was a dear friend and beloved by so many people,” Dolphins Vice Chairman, President and CEO Tom Garfinkel said. “Jason faithfully served the Dolphins organization for 14 years, was a beacon in the community, a trailblazer and champion for others, and above all, treated people with a kindness and dignity that left a lasting mark on everyone he met. Our deepest condolences and our unwavering support go out to his wife, Elizabeth, and his three children.”

The Dolphins later released a statement from owner Stephen Ross, with whom Jenkins worked closely.

Among those paying tribute to Jenkins on Saturday night was newly retired defensive back Jason McCourty, who played for the Dolphins last season.

Also paying tribute was Texas Tech University, Jenkins’ alma mater.

Then there was this from Dolphins second-year outside linebacker Jaelan Phillips:

And this from actor, and major Dolphins fan Josh Gad:

Jenkins joined the Dolphins in 2009 and was named Senior Vice President of Communications and Community Affairs in 2015. He oversaw the organization’s front-facing brands, including media outreach, public relations, social media and community efforts for the Dolphins, Hard Rock Stadium and Formula One Miami Grand Prix.

He was a fixture in the local South Florida community and dedicated his life to connecting with and serving others, most notably by creating the Dolphins’ Football Unites platform. Jenkins was also the board chair of the Dolphins Challenge Cancer, the largest fundraiser in the NFL which has raised more than $53 million for the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Jenkins previously served as the team’s Vice President of Communications, being named to that position in May 2013. Prior to joining the Dolphins, Jenkins worked in the media relations department for the San Francisco 49ers, as well as served as the Associate Athletic Director at Texas Southern University from 1999-2002 and as Athletic Sales and Promotion Manager and Sports Communications Assistant at Lehigh University from 1997-99.

A native of Houston, Jenkins earned his bachelor’s degree in 1997 in broadcast journalism from Texas Tech University. In 2017, Jenkins was selected by faculty and alumni as an Outstanding Alumni Award winner. He served as commencement speaker for the 2018 Texas Tech graduating class. Jenkins was also a board member on several South Florida based community organizations, including Anti-Defamation League Florida, Breakthrough Miami, Dolphins Challenge Cancer, Pro Sports Assembly, Urban League of Broward County, Women of Tomorrow, and YWCA Miami.

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