Michelle Ketterman

In Loving Memory of Michelle Ketterman…..


DeSean, Adreea and Gayle Jackson, of the DeSean Jackson Foundation are deeply sadden to learn of the passing of Michelle Ketterman; and, extend their deepest sympathy to Michelle’s family and thousands of friends who reached out to Michelle for affirmation, love and support.

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Gayle Jackson states that she met Michelle Ketterman on-line last year while participating in the Celgene Inaugural World Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Day. “Michelle contacted me first because she did not believe it was me, then to commend my son, DeSean, and me for our efforts towards raising Pancreatic Cancer. Michelle became my spiritual leader and source of strength on a daily basis. I looked forward to our conversations. I recall our last conversation. I was on Twitter in the wee hours trying to make a difference, doubting if I was, extremely exhausted and near tears. Michelle came on line and began to tell me how AWESOME I was and how I was an inspiration to her in this journey. She expressed concern for how hard I work and not taking time to care for myself. I promised her I would, and I have but while I was taking time off from advocating for Pancreatic Cancer…she slipped away. Rest In Peace, Michelle”. – Gayle Jackson

MICHELLE KETTERMAN (21 April 1967 – 06 April 2015)


Michelle Ketterman was an inspirational speaker, best-selling author, award-winning business owner and perpetual optimist. After many rewarding and prosperous years pursuing entrepreneurial pursuits, she was diagnosed with Stage IV pancreatic cancer. Without missing a beat, Michelle questioned how she could make the best of the devastating diagnosis and how her diagnosis could help others. With a new goal of redefining the cancer condition, she started sharing her experiences, motivating others to follow their passions and sharing their love right now.

Michelle Ketterman was a category creator, successful entrepreneur, trainer, author, speaker, and avid gardener. She was a certified Mastermind Facilitator and certified Life Coach. Her natural obstinate side served her well; in building businesses, she refused to accept no for an answer. Always able to find creative, unique, and inexpensive resources, tools, and approaches, Michelle developed simple and powerful techniques for entrepreneurs and built a solid reputation on strong ethics and integrity while teaching others how their business can stand out in the crowd. Her clients learned how to build a business based on strong principles, processes, and systems. Michelle encouraged everyone to pursue their unique definition of success.

Armed with little more than tenacity, strong ethics, and the unshakable belief that her vision would be realized, Michelle pushed a little known industry into mainstream awareness. Under her direction, processes, and big-picture planning, her simple idea created nationally accepted industry standards, the first recognized industry certification, and the most respected industry textbook and training material. Michelle worked several years at a Dallas area Chamber of Commerce where she was given a unique combination of first-hand experiences and observations that she used to help her clients define, plan, strategize, and create their success.

Michelle Ketterman brought humor and real-world experiences in her presentations about overcoming diversity, never accepting defeat, and plowing through any obstacle with a smile and clear intentions. Michelle was known for being honest, fair, and getting to the point as quickly as possible because she believes there is no limit to what each of us can achieve once we know who we are and what we truly love.

Using the experiences of a childhood spent with a violent drug addict, Michelle began formulating what would come to be known as the best-selling book “The Game of No Limits” at the age of 5; this is her 15th book. At 18, Michelle traveled to Albuquerque to meet her father for the first time. Although the trip was supposed to only last 2 weeks, Michelle stayed for 20 years and developed a strong sense of family previously unknown. She and her husband, known as “Mr. Wonderful” moved to Dallas in December 2005. Another job transfer for Mr. Wonderful landed them in Jacksonville, Florida in 2012. Michelle and Mr. Wonderful were married for over 22 years.

Michelle passed away peacefully on April 6, 2015 with her family by her side. She will be missed by the thousands of people she inspired.


Please donate to The DeSean Jackson Foundation, in memory of Michelle Ketterman, so we can continue the #Fight against Pancreatic Cancer.

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1 thought on “Michelle Ketterman”

  1. Reading your touching tribute to my wife brought tears to my eyes. I remember her talking about you and the DeSean Jackson Foundation, telling me how inspired she was by you and the work you were doing but it is only now that I saw this entry. So I wanted to thank you not only for your comments, but for your philanthropy and work to bring awareness to the impact of pancreatic cancer.

    When I met Michelle, she was unlike anyone I had ever met– a boisterous, over-the top personality who, despite a tough childhood, could melt your sadness with a smile and her laughter could be felt in your soul. It sounds silly to say she loved with all her being, but I can think of no other way to describe her.

    I’ve heard it said that the enlightened are those who can see with clarity the equality of all living creatures– that they are all perfectly created in His image and according to his plan. Michelle had that ability from the moment I met her and I was fortunate to see it develop the longer I knew her. She tried to see the best in people and to love unconditionally and I loved and admired that about her. She accepted people for who they were and worked tirelessly to help them grow to fulfill their own dreams. She lived in a state of thankfulness, knowing what we too easily forget: we are all blessed.

    I will miss Michelle for the rest of my life, but I will also thank God for every single day I had with her know that she will always be with us. I see her in the character of the man she helped me become and every time I look at our children. She lives on in our hopes and dreams…

    Thank you again for your kind words and your tireless efforts to “advance the common good by caring, cultivating, collaborating and advocating–One Team, One Purpose.”


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