To All Kansas City or Kansas Home Inspectors -
On Monday morning (12/6) about noon I received a phone call from a Realtor out in Lawrence, KS telling me that Jeff Clark, a home inspector in Lawrence died yesterday.
Jeff was about 49-50 years old; divorced; and had a son that started the University of Arkansas this year. Jeff was one of the 1st members and an Officer in the Great Plains ASHI Chapter in Kansas City; he later joined the Midwest Pro-ASHI Chapter and the Kansas KARCI group.
Jeff was an ardent education buff, and attended most every seminar locally of NACHI, ASHI, NAHI, MAREI and KARCI on a regular basis. He didn’t like the political banging of other groups and would not participate in it. As with many inspectors as the local economy has nose-dived, Jeff had dropped his membership in many of the groups but still supported them all.
Jeff had been doing home inspections in Lawrence for at least 15-17 years that I know of. Jeff was a quiet guy; thoughtful with a wry but keen sense of humor. He was always willing to help others. Five years ago I had a heart attack and heart bypass and was out of work for 3 months in the middle of the summer (our cash cow season).
Out of a clear blue sky Jeff showed up on my doorstep in Kansas City with a couple of sacks of groceries (veggies and all that healthy stuff) and started cooking. He told me when he was in his early / mid 20’s he’d had a heart valve fail and knew how hard the recoup could be. He became a dear friend.
Jeff had just finished remodeling his older ranch style house in Lawrence (he lived right off the KU campus) and had recently put it on the market.
He had just moved out in the country on a few acres. I’m told that his death may be the result of the prior heart valve replacement. I’m also told Jeff passed away in his sleep. Other than this I don’t know any details.
I did a job with him on last Saturday and then had dinner out in Lawrence with him and chatted quite awhile. He seemed in great spirits. This phone call came as quite a shock.
At this point I have not heard of plans for a funeral, visitation, OR … And I will be out of town for about a week.
His parents live in Maine; he’s divorced; his son is a college freshman on a scholarship to the University of Arkansas
If anyone else hears anything please keep the rest of us on notice.
Jeff will be missed.
I’ll be out of state until 12/19 and will not be able to be there, but I’ve been told by Jeffs ex-wife Cathy and a Realtor friend of Jeffs in Lawrence (Larry Northrup) that the Service for Jeff Clarkwill be **[FONT=Tahoma]Tuesday at 5:30PM **at [/FONT]Free Methodist Church, Lawrence Ave and 31st for anyone that wants to attend or send flowers.
It would be appreciated if anyone that has an email list of other local inspectors in Kansas or Kansas City, could forward this info to them
The body will then we shipped back to Maine where he was from and where his dad still lives - for Jeff to be buried next to his mother.
At this point what they know is that Jeff went grocery shopping Sunday, came home and apparently laid down to rest or take a nap or …
When the lady that manages his rental house couldn’t get hold of him Monday, she and a girl friend ran by Jeff’s new house about 5 miles west of Lawrence out in the country. He had not even gotten fully unpacked yet. That’s when they found him. They said he was dressed and laying under the covers on his bed, which is why they’re guessing he had laid down for a nap. At this point, I’m told the assumption is he had a heart attack, etc. I was just told today by one his other friends that Jeff had apparently been told at an annual physical a month ago that the heart valve may be leaking and he should have immediate surgery.
Jeff and I had talked Saturday about what many KC area inspectors are talking about - the huge slowdown in our local economy; about how few inspections we were seeing (0-4 a week); about how savings were going downhill rapidly; that was the slowest market either of us had seen in over 15 years; about the newly enacted Kansas licensing law requirement to either carry E & O insurance OR a surety bond. Everyone knows that E & O isn’t cheap and with the slow economy this past year, if you have less than perfect credit or have got dinged for late house or car payments this year - even the surety bond people are quoting $1,400-$1,600 to guys and some can’t afford either.
Even with the slow market, Jeff sounded positive that 2011 would be a better year.
He never said anything about being ill, feeling bad or anything else to give me an indication he might be sick or in poor health. I’m really kicking myself wondering if there was anything I should have noticed that might have told me his health was slipping, etc.
Good Bye old friend