Jeffrey Thomas Kirkwood, 40 years old, left this earth surrounded by the loving embrace of his family on July 20th, 2022 at the University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City, KS.
Jeffrey was born in Kansas City, MO on November 18th, 1981 to Kerry and Tambrey Kirkwood, he was the 3rd of 4 children.
Growing up he was quiet and reserved in front of most people, but was always fully his funny and adventurous self with his family. His shyness improved as he got older, but he always chose to stay in the background throughout his life, quietly observing and taking it all in.
Those who were closest to him knew the pain he was in. It was something he struggled with daily, but he always tried to stay strong for the rest of us.
He was a hard worker and took care of his family the best he could. He was a strong man who was never afraid to jump in and get his hands dirty.
He was always there to help someone in need and never said no to anyone. He gave selflessly of himself to anyone who needed it, be it with money or his time. He gave so much to others that he didn’t always have anything left for himself, physically as well as emotionally. He gave everything of himself he had (and more) to his family. And even after he left us, he continued to give with his generous gift of organ and tissue donation.
Jeff never knew a stranger and was a friend to everyone he met. We all felt better just for knowing him. The world was always a better place just for having him in it.
Jeff didn’t have a family of his own, but strongly believed that it takes a village to raise a child, and so took it as his responsibility to help raise and be there for all his nephews and nieces. All the kids love Uncle Jeff. He would play with them, take them fishing, and be a strong presence in their daily lives.
Jeff was preceded in death by his grandparents and nephew, Tyler, who were waiting for him and to surround him with love while they all wait to be reunited with the rest of us.
He is survived by his parents Kerry and Tammy, of the home; sister Beth Kirkwood-Berger and husband Mike (Boo); brother James Kirkwood and wife Michell; sister Cassandra Kirkwood-Norman and husband James; nephew/bonus brother Adam Kirkwood and wife Catherine; and many nieces and nephews: Adam and his sons Adam Jr. and Kaiden, Erin and her daughters Ellison and Brigid, John, Sean, Trevor, Keara, Kyle, Destiny, November, Christopher, Devon, and Aiden.
Jeff’s wishes were to be an organ donor and to be cremated. A Celebration of Life at the 28 Event Space in Kansas City will be announced in the coming weeks.
Please register to be an organ/tissue donor. One donor hero can save as many as 8 lives and improve the quality of life for 75 more! Our brother’s amazing gift of organ/tissue donation is what is helping us get through this unimaginable tragedy.
If you or someone you know is struggling with mental illness, depression or addiction, please ask for help. You don’t have to suffer through it alone. There is always another way. National Suicide Prevention Hotline #988.