JJ’s Legacy

Jeffrey Lamel Johns
“His young and strong heart will continue to beat.”

Jeffrey Johns slipped quietly into heaven in the early morning hours on Sunday, March 1, 2009. Jeff died in the trauma center at Kern Medical Center from injuries suffered in a tragic accident a few hours earlier. He was surrounded by family and friends who had come to say their final goodbyes to a vibrant young man who was deeply loved and whom will be forever in our thoughts and prayers.

Jeff was born in Bakersfield, on July 29, 1981 to parents Lori and Tom Johns. He attended Norris Elementary and Middle School and graduated from Garces Memorial High School in 1999. A gifted athlete, he played both baseball and football. He followed in the footsteps of his big brother, Drew, playing quarterback and earned MVP honors. He briefly attended college but after a year, he returned to his home in Bakersfield. Jeff entered the real estate appraisal business where he was mentored by his father. He subsequently entered the mortgage business and became a successful loan officer for Countrywide Mortgage.

Jeff was a real “life of the party.” His outgoing, fun-loving personality drew others to him and once inside his circle, he kept you there. In his spare time he played golf, went snowboarding, loved hanging out with Kelly and friends and was an avid pro and college football fan.

After Jeffrey’s passing the family was presented with the opportunity to donate his organs and tissues. Though the family had never talked about donation in the past, it felt like the right thing to do; Jeffrey was a giving person and if he knew that he could save someone else’s life he would have done it in a heartbeat. Jeffrey saved the lives of five people in need of organ transplants and healed 50 others through tissue donation. His young and strong heart will continue to beat in the chest of a fortunate person who will hopefully see sunrises and sunsets for many years to come. Forever his boyish and infectious smile will be a cherished memory.

In memory of Jeffrey’s gift of life, friends have joined me to organize a golf tournament to inspire the community to Donate Life through organ and tissue donation. Proceeds from the event will help donor families like mine as well as recipients throughout the Kern County area. Please join us on March 1, 2010 to celebrate the gift of life at the inaugural JJ’s Legacy Golf Tournament.

Sincerely,

Lori Malkin
Jeffrey’s Mother