SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Santa Clara men's rowing competes at the Western Sprints in Rancho Cordova, Calif. Saturday. The Bronco will try to qualify for the IRA national championships for the third time in as many years.
Santa Clara will be dedicating their efforts to the memory of Jim "Jedda" Uyeda who passed away suddenly in early December.
"Our team is dedicating its effort at Western Sprints this weekend to Jedda," Santa Clara head coach Jay Farwell said. "Our goal this weekend is to qualify for the IRA Regatta and the team's commitment to pulling for Jedda and all those who came before them will provide added motivation and focus for this weekend's racing. Jedda will be missed by all those who called him friend, teammate and/or coach."
"I rowed with him, and can speak to his tenacity, toughness and shear power on the water," said Mike Plachy, a former teammate of Uyeda. "It was a challenge being his pair partner and trying to keep the boat straight. He even snapped an oar in half during a seat race one day. This demonstrated not only his impressive strength but his great attitude as well. He didn't hold back. Most importantly he was the most loyal friend I've ever had. If he liked you, he picked you up and carried you over his shoulder at crew parties. If he loved you, he told you so. He was one of a kind."
"Jedda was a dedicated oarsman and coach for Santa Clara and really epitomized and embodied all that is Santa Clara Rowing," Farwell added. "He was a giant among men and his passion for the sport, his teammates, and those he coached was contagious. While none of the current team members were ever fortunate to meet Jedda, there is that common bond and understanding that there are those that came before you who helped blaze the trail that you now benefit from."
Uyeda held a position at The Business Foundation in Warsaw, Poland from 1989-1994. There he co-wrote and edited the book The Business Guide to Poland. He traveled extensively throughout Europe. After traveling extensively through Europe, he returned to the U.S. and became the V.P. / Manager in charge of International Personal Banking at Wells Fargo Bank.
He then became a farmer with his long-term partner Kenneth Monnens, establishing the "Twisted Willow Farm" where they grew the worlds most revered mushroom - the Truffle. The two also bred Lagotto Romagnolo dogs, (Italian) "truffle dogs". Jim loved nature and animals as was expressed in Jim and Ken's cadre of Lagotto Romagnolo dogs, miniature horses, and a variety of other creature residents on their farm.
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