In Memory of Jesse Russo

By Gabriel Acevedo

On behalf of The Banner staff and the CSI community, we write this to mourn the loss of a student on our campus, Jesse Russo. 

Born April 29, 2002, Jesse was an alumni of St. Peter’s Boys High School. From there she went on to the College of Staten Island, where she majored in English and minored in continuing education. She wished to pursue a career in English or History. 

Jesse was a prominent member of the campus’ LGBTQ resource center. She would always be there in the morning, ready to hang out with her friends and talk about anything. 

She also was known for her fancy western fashion, sporting a cowboy hat and a pansexual dog tag. She regularly attended events with friends and was willing to share a laugh or a meme from her phone. Jesse is someone that meant a lot to CSI’s LGBTQ community. 

“Thank you so much for being here, you were the best person ever. When I first met you, I saw your cowboy style with the hat and I was laughing but I liked it a lot because you looked nice and like a good person. Thank you for telling me about how I’m the sunshine that walks in and people smile a lot; that the voices in my head, the bad ones, they are fake. And also thank you for the day that you sat down with me near the lockers in the middle of the hallway near the LGBTQ room, you talked to me and hugged me. I always sit next to the lockers that me and you sat at.” 

— Max (he/they)

“Jesse was by my side everyday for the past five months. I told her everything, we complained about life, we laughed and acted like children. I could never be mad around her, I could never be sad. Every second I spent with her I enjoyed to the fullest. I’ll miss her until the end of time. I’ll miss our adventures through Todt Hill, our late nights on the beach, our time together in the center. Every time we were together, everything felt so easy to understand. No worries, no problems, no fears. Just me, Jesse, and our best friends, because she was the best.”

— Janiel (he/him)

“I didn’t know Jesse for long personally but every time I saw her she was would light up the whole room. She always made an effort to make sure you were included. She was one of the kindest people I’ve ever met.”

— Anthony T (he/him)

“Jesse was honestly the best person to ever come into the resource center. Seeing her and making those stupid funny jokes or just asking dumb things would always brighten my day. Jesse was such an amazing soul, always putting others first instead of herself and constantly caring for others. Jesse’s heart was so pure and kind. I loved her so much and I loved every moment I spent with her. We created some great memories that I will always cherish and remember. I will miss seeing the outfits you always had on, the cowgirl hat, and everything about you. Love and remembering you forever and always, cowgirl.” 

— Jasmine Ferrer (she/they)

“Jesse…you were one of the first people I met and became quick friends with at CSI. You always greeted me with witty jokes and fun history videos. Every time we hung out in the morning, with you Caitlin, Gil, and everyone else, it gave me life. At my old college, I never got to hang with my friends there that much; here, I was able to. I was able to find a friend in you, a friend I can talk to and feel at home. I miss you my friend, and I regret that we never got to do that hotpot/rab’s bowling/Ice Skating/Alamo trip.”

— Gabe (he/him)

For students seeking support, the Counseling Center is available in 1A-109 between 9:00 am to 5:00 pm on Monday through Friday. You can make an appointment at (718) 982-2391 or email

CSI’s LGBTQ+ Support Group meets every Thursday at 12:00 pm in 1C-226. For more information, contact

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.