Jacob Fanta

Jacob Fanta

June 22, 1977 February 7, 2020

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Obituary for Jacob Solomon Fanta

Jacob was born on the morning of June 22, 1977, in the car on the way to the hospital with his sisters in the back seat eating blueberries. His hurried arrival was instant and enduring family lore and filled us with joy.

Jacob went to Burns Park, Tappan, Pioneer, and Community. He met his lifelong closest friend at Eastern Michigan University and was a member of AEPi.

Jacob was a skilled and curious craftsman. He was mechanically inclined from the start and would take anything apart to see how it worked. His strong hands were enormous, and tools just seemed to fit them. His creativity was boundless and he was comfortable in any medium; from ceramics to paper, his hands were at home. He had an affinity for small items that were heavy for their size, and for things that were useful despite their antiquity. He built a Rubens’ tube to enjoy the beauty of the physics of the standing acoustic wave. At the time of his passing he was developing a forge for casting.

Jacob was an exquisite son, brother, uncle. He is survived by his mother, Elizabeth Fanta (Linda); his father, Andrew Fanta (Valerie); his sisters, Rachel Fanta Ronco (Mitchell), Sara Mallach (Larry) and Abby Adams (Justin). He is survived by nephews, Emmett Ashton and Asa Mallach and Joshua Adams; and his nieces, Beatrice Adams and Emma Ronco. He leaves behind aunts, uncles, cousins, and countless loved ones, whose grief is compounded by the senselessness of his loss.

Those who knew Jacob miss him terribly. He was a delight to us and the world has lost a gentle man and a gentle soul. His hurried departure has left us aching. Sunday dinners won’t be the same without his generous humor and dulcet tones.

Jacob chose to donate his body to the University of Michigan Medical School so, in his words, “they could take [him] apart and learn something.” His loved ones take comfort in that legacy which honors his life.

Jacob died on February 7, 2020, from complications of alcoholic liver disease. It is our family’s tragedy that the comorbidity of depression and alcoholism is not better understood. Please take signs of either disease seriously.

A celebration of Jacob’s life is planned for Summer.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Packard Health

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Jacob Solomon Fanta, please visit our Heartfelt Sympathies Store.
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Aaron DeWoskin

Jacob was one of my closest friends growing up. We built a snowboard together, we traveled to St. Louis together, we did gymnastics together, we mountain bikes together, we played sega, and we smoked a cigar in the sixth grade and didn’t extinguish it correctly and almost burnt my house down. Jacob extinguished the fire while I was on the phone with my parents. He will be remembered for all of the kindness, humor, and ingenuity that he offered. May his parents and sisters know how much we loved him. Rest In peace my brother.
Comment | Posted at 06:39pm via Condolence

jonah Weisskopf

Jake was an important part of my childhood. I was blessed to know him and play with him before becoming an adult. Jake was sweet, creative, gentle, inquisitive, and kind. Over the years I often think of conversations I had with Jake during my childhood. I remember so clearly when I once started to develop an overly sarcastic cynical "whatever" that I started saying to people in a dismissive way. We were in my basement hanging out and Jake said to me "you know Jonah people don't want to be around you when act like that". Jake delivered the message to my heart and I stopped the irritating behavior. I was blessed to know Jake and his family and he was a real friend who could deliver real truth with compassion. May he rest in peace and my love goes out to him and his family.
Comment | Posted at 10:01am via Condolence

Adri Jayaratne

My memories of you are fond and deep. We had many fun times together growing up. From hanging out at our houses to racing each other in the diag. It saddens me to no end that we lost touch after I left Ann Arbor and I wish I could have been there for you. Attached is a photo from right before our group of friends started going their own ways. You were and forever always will be my brother.
Comment | Posted at 11:59pm via Condolence

Al Duarte

I recall practically every time I met Jacob. He was a gentle and kind man liked and loved by everyone that met him. I recall the last time we got together. I had a wonderful time with him. We talked about the state of the world. We talked about trivial things. We bonded. It was great. In fact, I looked forward to the next time we were going to get together. That never happened. I miss you gentle man with the sad eyes.

My deepest sympathies to his father, his mother, his sisters and the rest of his family and loved ones.

This is the last time I saw Jacob on June 26, 2016.
Comment | Posted at 05:23am via Condolence

Evette Lutman

For several years I sat at your family's seder table. Jacob, Rachel, Sara and Abby made it so much fun. We say in Judaism zichrono livracha, may Jacob's memory be for blessing. One of the ways that we can do exactly that is by remembering as you have already cautioned in Jacob's obituary here: depression is serious - it isn't just "being down in the dumps", something to "snap out of". Alcoholism is a serious disease with horrible consequences to the body and family. The mixture of the two can be deadly. In Jacob's memory, do everything you can to facilitate someone seeking help, an employee, a relative, a friend.
Comment | Posted at 04:43pm via Condolence

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