Obituary of Jeff Allen Newkirk
With deep love, respect, admiration and gratitude, we honor and celebrate the beautiful life of Jeff Allen Newkirk. Born July 9, 1945, Jeff leaves an amazing legacy of influencing others and sharing his quiet strength, gentle smile, enduring kindness and generosity. He had a contagious laugh which was often elevated by his joy in sharing spontaneous jokes and puns. Jeff loved to tell stories, of which he had many; yet he was also a patient and active listener who took the time to connect with those around him. His constant commitment and loyalty to family and friends was evident in every thoughtful interaction. The depth of his heart and capacity to communicate love without explicit words was part of the indelible magic that touched us all who knew him.
Jeff led by example and showed us the meaning of living a joyful, genuine and authentic life. His lessons were yet another example of his quiet humility: work hard, play hard, invest in your community, live by the golden rule and always share a smile and a kind word. Throughout his life, he was a gifted and competitive athlete. In his youth, he enjoyed swimming, participating on the Junior Olympic team, played baseball in high school, (first graduating class at Soquel High in 1963), played tennis, sailed, as well as later becoming a marathon runner, triathlete, and a surfer. It wasn't until retirement that he revisited a past love of golf and immersed himself in the game with passion, commitment and a stoic reverence which not only rewarded him as a scratch golfer but with a rich and vibrant community of close friends.
His life was full and diverse, working as a ranch hand laying pipe to serving in the Navy during the Vietnam War. Jeff went on to become V.P. of Starlite Homes and then the proprietor of the Runner’s Factory in Los Gatos for 35 years. These accomplishments are secondary to the overall integrity and dignity with which he lived his life and his blessed ability to make others feel like a better person for having known him.
Jeff was an incredible father, and along with the love of his life for 50 years, Catherine, raised three children- Elizabeth, Melissa and Jack. He took tremendous pride and joy in being the grandfather to Jazmine and Kayla Fiedler, Max Newkirk and was dearly looking forward to the birth of his third granddaughter this winter.
Jeff was one of a kind, a true gentleman, and will be forever loved and in our hearts.
In lieu of flowers, please send gifts to Santa Cruz Cancer Care in memory of Jeff Newkirk. Donations can be made online at www.sutterhealth.donordrive.com – pull down menu “In Memory Of” or checks can be made to PAMF and mailed to:
Office of Philanthropy/PAMF
2025 Soquel Avenue
Santa Cruz, CA 95062