J6er Jennifer Heinl shared with us her tribute to Ellis, her 23 year old son, who died of an autoimmune disease on December 6th, 2022.

We are so sorry for you loss Jennifer!
Sending love from the J6 families Private Group and from our team.

Ellis Reese Popiolkowski
of Pittsburgh, left the world peacefully on December 6th, 2022 at the age of 23.
“In one of those stars I shall be living. In one of them I shall be laughing. And so it will be as if all the stars were laughing, when you look at the sky at night. And when your sorrow is comforted (time soothes all sorrows) you will be content that you have known me. You will always be my friend…I shall not leave you.”
– Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince
Ellis is survived by his mother, Jennifer Carso-Heinl, father, Mark Popiolkowski, his beloved little brother Donato Iacurci, his grandparents, Georgia Popiolkowski, Kymberly (Sam) Secreet, Godparents Kathy and Patrick Corcoran, Aunts: Melissa (Adam) St. Giles/Corwin, Katie Gagliano, Angela (Thomas) Kelley, and Gina Secreet as well as his cousins Elena Corcoran-O’Sullivan, His Confidant Anthony Meissonier, Jamison Lutz, Rocco, Elisabetta and Geno Gagliano.
He was the great grandson of the late Kathryn (Kay-Kay) Boone and grandson of Leon Popiolkowski.
Ellis was born on Born on April 26th, 1999, to parents Jennifer Carso-Heinl and Mark Popiolkowski. Ellis had an unparalleled drive, competitive spirit, and zest for life. As a highly decorated and state wrestling champion in both freestyle and folk, he earned a highly coveted spot on the elite PA State Wrestling Team where he represented Pennsylvania competing with some of the best wrestlers in the nation. He was an avid bodybuilder and knowledgeable fitness enthusiast who enjoyed helping other people unlock their own potentials through diet and fitness. Known by those around him for his wit and insight, Ellis also enjoyed attending concerts and creating electronic dance music (EDM). Ellis took great pride in his role as a big brother and mentor to Donato.
Ellis had multiple family members, friends and step brothers that he adored and admired. Special thank you to Micheal Heinl and Dan Iacurci, Coach Smitty and to the coaches at OMP, Young Guns, Canon McMillan and Shaler High School for the love and support.
In lieu of Flowers, a trust fund will be setup in honor of Ellis. Please send donations to PO Box 11184, Pittsburgh, PA 15237 Checks made out to Ellis Popiolkowski Scholarship Fund