Jamie was born in Weston, Mass. on June 22, 1961, and was immediately introduced to the world of scholarship. His father, the late James Albert Kapteyn, was a secondary school English teacher at the Cambridge School of Weston and a teacher at Simon’s Rock, an "early college" for accelerated high school students. Jamie spent the majority of his childhood in Berkshire and Franklin counties, attending Berkshire Country Day School and Deerfield Academy. He then enrolled at Trinity College in Connecticut and earned an M.A. from the Bread Loaf School of English at Middlebury College.
After a short career in advertising in New York City and marketing in Berkshire County, Jamie found his calling as a boarding school teacher. His first teaching job was as an English tutor at Miss Hall’s School. He then moved on to teach English, coach and serve as a dorm parent at Cushing Academy for nine years, where he chaired the English department for several years.
From 1998 to 2000 Jamie chaired the English Department at The Williston Northampton School before moving on to Deerfield Academy, his alma mater. For seven years, he taught English, served as the sophomore class dean, coached girls’ varsity soccer and boys’ varsity lacrosse, and lived in a boys’ dormitory with his wife, Kirsten, and his two daughters, Ingrid and Ilse.
Jamie’s family life was closely intertwined with his teaching career, but his hobbies also made their way into the classroom. An avid fly fisherman, Jamie taught a course at Deerfield called, “The Quiet Sport: A Study of the Science, the Craft and the Literature of Fly Fishing.” He cared for his students like they were his own, and is remembered for the way he rode his bike down Deerfield’s Albany Road, wearing a beret and Barbour jacket and greeting everyone he passed.
Jamie died on January 16, 2007 at age 45 while playing indoor soccer with friends and colleagues from Deerfield Academy. More than 1,000 people attended Jamie’s memorial service at Deerfield on January 21, 2007.
Known for his quiet confidence, integrity, humility and playful wit, Jamie was a star teacher.