It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of our beloved Jeff Hemker.
An amazing person to have as a friend or colleague, Jeff was always surrounded by many who wanted to enjoy his stories and wisdom at every event he attended. Jeff was also ready to help anyone he saw in need. His generosity, kindness, and intellect combined with his wit and dry sense of humor made up the beauty of his personality.
Jeffrey L. Hemker was born on August 16, 1955, in West Salem, Wisconsin. He was a 1979 graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Lacrosse with a degree in Political Science. Shortly after his graduation and the creation of the 401(k) plan, Jeff found his calling in retirement plan sales. Always a top salesperson, Jeff eventually became a National Sales Leader and was happiest when he could share his experience and knowledge with those that sought his advice and guidance. Known for launching and advancing many careers in retirement plan sales and marketing, Jeff would often be stopped and presented with long declarations of gratitude for how his efforts changed the trajectory of a life for the better. The depth of Jeff’s sincere happiness for the successes and accomplishments of others was a wonderful facet of his nature.
Jeff married Alisa, his wife of 21 years, in June of 2000, becoming stepfather to Christopher in the process. The three enjoyed life in Naperville, IL, before moving to Cypress, TX, in 2004. Jeff loved being a stepfather and always tried to instill a strong work ethic in Christopher. With Alisa, Jeff went above and beyond to make not just birthdays and holidays but every day special. It was important to him that Alisa and Christopher had everything they needed to feel safe and secure. This, he accomplished.
Even with thousands of reward miles and hotel points, Jeff did not travel for leisure. He was happiest at home with Alisa and their dogs Sophia Mia, RalphE and Stella Bella. Prior to this generation of pets, Jeff was often heard sharing the adventures of mischievous Charlie and sweet Chula dog. Recent holidays surrounded by Alisa, Christopher and niece Jenny and family were special to him.
Jeff was preceded in death by his parents Leonard and Joyce Indahl Hemker. He is survived by wife Alisa Ortiz Hemker, stepson Christopher Tristan, brother Steve (Gail) Hemker, nieces Andrea (Cory) Stocker, Angie (Scott Brenengen) Hemker, and Jenny (Romeo) Mendez, grandnieces McKenna and Reagan Stocker, and grandnephews Brock Brenengen and Reeve Mendez. Jeff also leaves behind his closest childhood friends Rahn (Judy) Pischke and Kenny (Tina) Meyer, whose presence at Jeff’s bedside brought comfort to his final days. Alisa and Christopher were with Jeff when he died.
For all who knew Jeff, the world will never be the same. A Celebration of Life will be announced as soon as arrangements are finalized.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Jeff’s memory can be made to the ASPCA at aspca.org/donate. Please choose memorial and use the email alhemker at gmail dot com for acknowledgements.