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A former member
Post #: 18
We are all richer for having the privilege of having known Jay. And when I say we, I mean that we as individuals were enriched by our relationships with Jay, as well as the fact that the "collective we", The Cleveland Freethinkers as a group are also quite richer for having Jay as one of our active members.
I always learned a lot from Jay's comments during discussions, both online and in person.I had the great pleasure of enjoying some great one on one conversations with Jay, and I will treasure the memory of those times spent together.
At one of the CFT roundtable discussions, after Jay uttered one of his typically astute, witty observations, I quipped, "I want to be like Jay Gardner when I grow up.". I said that, due to the fact that Jay was the ideal embodiement of the adage,"The truly wise realize that education is a lifelong endeavour."
Jay will truly be missed.
Cleveland, OH
Post #: 559
Jay will be missed. I’m very glad I had the chance to meet him.
Mark K.
user 12460506
Richfield, OH
Post #: 1
So nice to see all these great comments remembering Jay.
His wonderful family is coping as best they can.

I want to share a few details that I've just learned from Jay's daughter Kate.

Combined visitation and service will begin at 10:00 AM, Monday September 19th at Zeis McGreevey Funeral Home, 16105 Detroit Avenue in Lakewood.­

Death notice will be in The Plain Dealer this Friday and Sunday.

Thanks again, everybody. Jay will be missed in many ways.
user 7981776
Wadsworth, OH
Post #: 2
I am very saddened by this news. My condolences to his family and close friends. Jay was a great guy who will be missed by all those who knew him.
A former member
Post #: 197
Do you know how late visitation goes? It's not on their website yet.
Mark K.
user 12460506
Richfield, OH
Post #: 2
Ginger, plans are still tentative at this point [and quite recently slightly more uncertain], but general idea is visitation 10:00-1:00, followed by a very short "service" at 1:00.
Lisa M.
user 8362830
Stow, OH
Post #: 59
Where else can you enjoy sustained rational conversation? ~Jay D. Gardner We will continue the conversation and celebrate jay's Life. Lisa

Ray V
user 7799412
Stow, OH
Post #: 739
Jay will be missed. He was funny, smart and every conversation provided a laugh.
user 9302588
Cleveland, OH
Post #: 11
Jay was very helpful and supportive when I first joined the group. As I was just in the process of leaving church, I had a lot of questions, and Jay's advice and reading recommendations provided the information I was looking for. Very sad to see him go.
A former member
Post #: 198
I know I expressed my sadness for the loss of Jay on the mailing list, but I'll repeat myself here. This is a big loss to our group. Jay was a cheerful and humorous man with an extraordinary knowledge of history and religion. It was almost intimidating, but I always found his contributions engrossing and enlightening. Jay did not get involved in the heated debates on the mailing list, but instead offered a nice punctuation to the conversation by offering relevent information or a humorous pithy response. I shall be re-reading for them over the next week or so.

Mark K, do you know of anything Jay's family would like help with right now? Probably they are getting a lot of casseroles and flowers and things already, but if they mention anything they'd specifically like, let us know. Often the most important thing is just knowing people care and share their grief and not be afraid to talk to them and acknowledge it. Make sure his family knows of our expressions of condolences until we are able to see them in person (and some of us may not be able to see them in person). During my biggest experience of grief (a cat I had cared for for nearly 21 years), every single card or acknowledgment I received (and I was disappointed by how few) really brightened my day. My co-workers all signed a card and the fact that they took the time to do that and recognize that this was important to me was wonderful.

Of course after these kinds of events (even when babies are born for example), many people thoughtfully offer help and of course in a high time of stress that is needed. I do get concerned though on how people can help over the long term after the routine of life sets back in. Jay has brought family including his wife, Ann to our meetups, and of course it would be great to have them back in the future.
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