Jessie Aikman

Jessie Aikman - Rochester Cremation

Rollinsford, NH: On September 3, 2023, Jessie Aikman died from injuries she received while pursuing her lifelong dream of competitive horseback riding. She was born on July 29, 1957 in Cambridge, Massachusetts to Robin and Walter Aikman and lived most of her life on the family farm in Rollinsford, NH. The oldest of six, her siblings referred to her as “The Warden” due to assertive leadership style.  She was an absolute badass whose unique blend of kindness, sass, and spirited stick-to-itiveness were present throughout her life.

She loved animals from an early age. By the age of ten, when she wasn’t riding real horses, she and her sisters practiced trick riding on their bicycles, tying twine to the handlebars to use as reins. She competed in equestrian eventing in high school and worked on the family dairy farm. She attended the University of New Hampshire where she graduated with a degree in Animal Science. As an adult, she loved her many dogs and horses wholeheartedly.

Jessie had many skills and hobbies, and she excelled in all of them. Jessie was the owner of Back Channel Canvas Shop in Eliot, ME, and was known by many to be a genius when it came to designing and crafting custom awnings, boat tops, and other structures out of canvas. She began collecting and riding antique motorcycles in the 1980s, and was the president of the Yankee Chapter of the American Antique Motorcycle Association for several years. She was a skilled knitter and pursued many other creative passions including baking quilting, photography, ceramics, and playing the flute. She was fiercely competitive and always loved to win, whether that be in a quilt show, a dog agility competition, or just a “friendly game of Cribbage.”

When she was in her mid-fifties, after a life-changing trail ride in the mountains near Telluride, Colorado and in the midst of a decades-long battle with rheumatoid arthritis, Jessie decided to bring horses back into her life and pursue her childhood dream of competitive equine eventing in earnest. She dedicated many hours to practicing, and found success both in competitions and in achieving her goals as an athlete. She became known in the horse world as a rockstar and was admired by teammates and competitors alike for her “balls,” her determination, and great sense of humor.

Jessie will be sorely missed by her husband Mike Lingley, her mother, and her siblings Lucy Putnam, William Aikman and Sophie Aikman all of Rollinsford, NH; Lorna Mehta of New York, NY and Robert  Aikman of Fairbanks, AK, her beloved stepson, her extended family and her many niblings, grandchildren, and friends. We will never forget her indefatigable generosity, her miraculous ability to incorporate the “f bomb” into any sentence, or her “mile high apple pie.”

A celebration of life will be held at a later date in the future.  In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the following organizations:

US Eventing Association Foundation: A memorial fund has been set up in Jessie’s honor through the Area 1 USEA Adult Rider Program. Donations to the fund can be made at

NH SPCA in Stratham for their dog and horse rescue programs:

14 Condolences

  1. Ros Pappenheimer Zimmermann on September 10, 2023 at 12:40 pm

    Jessie and I grew up across the street from one another. We walked to school together nearly every day. I remember her smile and her laugh. She was such a confident, competent, and caring oldest sibling. She had a calming influence on me. I have happy memories of going to the family farm with her and the entire Aikman clan. I am deeply sorry for this loss to her family. With love, Ros Pappenheimer Zimmermann

  2. laura stutz on September 10, 2023 at 3:12 pm

    The Best , friend and lover of life. My very heartfelt condolences to her loving family. She will be so missed in this world!

  3. Pat Manley on September 10, 2023 at 7:45 pm

    I knew Jessie through our work in marine canvas. It was always a pleasure to see her. She was generous in sharing her knowledge. We shared our trials and successes. I will miss her very much.
    Pat Manley

  4. doug frederick on September 11, 2023 at 7:00 am

    Dear Jessie Family,
    My sincere condolences to all that loved and respected Jessie; a woman who made me smile from the first motorcycle meet. Her humor was different but never harmful and her kindness was always sincere and direct. I remember her as a true individual. Her love of 2 wheeled and four legged horsepower brings nothing but fond memories.
    Rest in Peace
    doug frederick

  5. David Buckley on September 11, 2023 at 10:36 am

    You will be missed darling we had some good times love you

  6. Lynn Boston on September 11, 2023 at 7:34 pm

    I haven’t seen Jessie for at least 40 years but she has left an impression on my heart. I’m so sorry for your loss of her – she was one of a kind. She will always be remembered with lovve and admiration. She was one of a kind! My condolences to her family and many friends. 💗🙏💔

  7. Bonnie Carberry on September 11, 2023 at 9:33 pm

    i’ve been at a loss of words. still am. u will be so missed my friend. sligo won’t be the same. ill miss the bon bon and stop in for a drink. will miss u Jessie. Condolences to all. u were so well loved. ❤️

  8. Susan Robidoux on September 11, 2023 at 10:38 pm

    I befriended Jessie on Facebook and she invited me over to ride- and so I did! We had a great time despite riding over a ground jacket nest all turned out well. I had a lovely time with her and Rusty and Treasure. We made some plans to get together in the future but alas they won’t happen. I am so sorry to hear of her passing she was a wonderful and generous person.

  9. Carl and Betsy Stevens on September 15, 2023 at 3:41 pm

    Oh my, what a loss. We’re so sorry. We knew Jessie as long time customers of Back Channel Canvas and it was always a pleasure to stop by the shop either to attempt to convince her to fit us into the busy schedule or to pick up the latest project. There was always a little extra time to talk about something…a shared connection to Honduras, reusing all those animal feed bags, or even sewing tips (and demos!) for us to tackle canvas projects the shop couldn’t get to. What a wonderful woman.

  10. Lee Dodier on September 16, 2023 at 10:20 pm

    Although I never new Jessie I new her brothers Will and Rob my dear condolences.

    Lee Dodier

  11. Scott Dube on September 19, 2023 at 11:51 am

    Sorry to learn of her untimely demise. I always enjoyed my interactions with Jessie. Her upfront style and penchant for not telling you what you wanted to hear will be missed. I’m sure she leaves a large hole in her family and extended friend network but I am sure she would have some “encouraging” words for those who spent too much time mourning her loss over celebrating her life.

  12. Bobby O'Leary on September 19, 2023 at 1:07 pm

    So sorry to hear this and for your loss. She was great to work with. Enjoyed our few and brief conversations. She was as fiesty as I am! She will be missed. Again our condolences from the entire team at Lazy Jacks

  13. Kate Buckley on September 19, 2023 at 4:09 pm

    I knew Jessie in the 70’s, she was remarkable, funny and kind. My condolences to her family and loved ones.

  14. Melanie Miner on October 19, 2023 at 11:36 am

    Even though we only had a FB connection in the last 10 years she is missed by Barry and I. We knew her in the 80 & 90’s she was always wonderful to be around. Every time I see pink grass in late August I think of her and will continue I’m sure May she be at peace and condolences to her greater family! 💕 Barry and Melanie Mineralized

Leave a Condolence

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