Thursday, September 16, 2010

Jeff Gravon Plaque dedication

This Saturday, September 18th I will help dedicate a plaque at noon for Jeff Gravon in front of the Worthington YMCA.

Jeff was a childhood friend. He stood up for me in Amy & my wedding; I officiated his wedding. Jeff was passionate about youth. He passed away from cancer in January 2009. I officiated at both of his funeral services. When he died Jeff was the Boys Basketball coach at New Prague High School. His fight with cancer received some media coverage in the Twin Cities.

At the luncheon after his funeral in Worthington I started talking to some folks about dedicating a tree for Jeff in his memory. Over time the idea of dedicating a tree morphed into dedicating a plaque in front of the Worthington YMCA. Jeff spent much of his childhood at the Y. He spent his summer’s playing baseball on the ball fields at the Y. When he was older he did a lot of umpiring for the Y.

Jeff was one of the most competitive people I ever knew. He fought his cancer to his last breath. I shared the following story at his funeral and on the Jeff Gravon Memorial Facebook page. I remember when we played summer baseball in the YMCA rec league. I was not a good baseball player, but one game I was feeling it. I had three doubles. In the last inning Jeff came in as a relief pitcher for the other team. We had runners on second and third. I was at bat. He promptly beaned me. He beaned one of his friends in a summer baseball game, so that he could win. And they did win the game!!

You can check out some other beautiful stories on the discussion link on the Jeff Gravon Memorial Facebook page.

Jeff was one of the most dedicated fathers that I ever met. He would do anything for his children. One of his greatest sorrows was he didn’t get to see Jason, Danielle, Allison and Jordan grow up.

We’ll share some more stories about Jeff during the dedication on Saturday. A special thanks to the Andy Johnson from the Worthington YMCA, Audrey Parkhurst, Wayne Klumper, and the Gravon family for all they did to help set up this dedication.

If you are in the Worthington area this Saturday, come join us at noon.

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