His life was full, and far too short. He overcame so many things and thought he was so far away. He was the first to give you the shirt off his back and always the last one to the table. You can look back on his short 37 years and think of all good times, and remember his smile. He struggled with health issues from child hood. Jeff had poorly feet, he use to tell me about all his casts and crutches, and how someone bullied him for his walkman, and how with his cast and crutches on he didn't let any bully take anything, I am sure he lumped that guy. He wouldn't let anyone else be bullied either. When we talked to Tanner about bullying, Jeff shared a story about how kids bullied his best friend Jeff for being different, and they tripped little Jeff, and Jeff lumped them. One of many trips to the principals office. When Jeff and I first started dating, his birthday came around quickly. Chinese food dinner and always a story about how he would go ice fishing as a kid with Brian, Helen and Jenny and their friends, Helen would always ask Jeff "want to go ice fishing?" And jeff would always laugh and say no. Not his favorite thing. When we were married there were stories told about a skate throwing incident. Apparently Jeff threw a skate a Jenny many moons ago. It wasn't until last year, Jeff would ever admit he did that.
Jeff loved video games. I think through out his life he had every system going, and I can honestly say, he kept every single box. When we moved to our house, he had his original nintendo cart, the thing held games and your tv, and it was broke in the move and he was devestated. Just when you think no one could love video games more, along comes Tanner.
Jeff loved his children. Tanner and Addison were the loves of his life, and he was theirs. On a Saturday morning, if Jeff slept in, they would cringe if I walked down the stairs first. Because if it was Daddy, they knew they could talk him into junk for breakfast and video games. He was always playing hockey with them, road, ice, and hallway hockey... Last goal wins... How many times I heard that in his life I can't tell you, but it was said everytime they played. They are sure going to miss their daddy.
Jeff did the best impressions of his dad. And he always wanted to please his parents. He loved them dearly. How many times he would call them, and just call to see what was going on. Not many days went by that he didn't know what was going on in their household. When I was pregnant with Tanner, Jeff's parents built a deck on their house, after many years of not having one. Jeff went out and helped his dad and uncle Donnie. It was July and hot, Donnie and Brian would have no shirt on, and there Jeff would be sweatting buckets. Wouldn't take his shirt off, so driving home I asked why don't you take your shirt off, he said, dad doesn't know I have a tattoo. So, a couple of years later, Jeff had back surgery, and as they moved him into his hospital bed, it was kind of hard not to see his tattoo. We left the hospital to get dinner, and beside the restaurant was a tattoo shop, and jeff's dad just looked at us and said Jeff can get the other arm done there... Jeff laughed when we told him the story.
When you think of Jeff, remember his infectious smile, his harty laugh, his good heart. Think of his children, and how he will live on through them. As hard as it is to say good bye, we will. But we know its not a real good bye, its only see you later. As Tanner and Addison grow up, I hope everyone shares positive memories of Jeff with them, they need those memories because a big whole will be in their hearts, as there is a big hole in all of our hearts.