In Loving Memory of Jeff Given
Jeffrey David Given died peacefully at his home in Lafayette, CA on July 9, 2021, at the age of 61 years old. Jeff was comforted by his wife, Geri, and two sons, Jack and Tucker, as he passed, ending a four-year battle with ALS.
Jeff is survived by his parents, David and Carol Given of Hilton Head, SC, his wife, Geri Given of Lafayette CA, and sons, Jackson and Tucker Given of Emeryville, CA. He was the sister to Elizabeth Fodor and brother in law to William Fodor both of Madison CT. Jeff was the son in law to Raymond (deceased) and Barbara Zulli of Tampa FL, sister in law to Pam Zulli of Tampa, and Deneen Zulli of Orlando. His brother Jim (deceased) was married to Jeff’s sister in law Erin Langton who lives in Medfield, MA. Jeff was the Uncle to 3 nephews, Ryan, Kevin and Cal and niece, Annie.
Jeff was born on April 16,1960, in Fairview Park, OH, to David and Carol Given and was raised in Westlake, OH. He attended the Westlake public school system, where he enjoyed K-12 friendships, met his future wife Geri in the sixth grade, and received the high school's Student/Athlete Award his senior year. Jeff attended Dartmouth College in Hanover, NH, graduating in 1983 with a degree in mathematics. After moving to Boston, he began working for Marriott Hotels in February 1984 as a front desk clerk. He was hired by a friend who loved working there and said the Marriott culture "gets in your blood." Also in 1984, Jeff and Geri were married in Westlake, OH, on December 28th. Following four promotions and working at four Boston area Marriott hotels he accepted the position of Front Office Manager at the Santa Clara Marriott, and in 1989 Jeff and Geri moved to California. In 1991, he crossed over from Rooms Operations to Sales. Over the next sixteen years, Jeff held positions of increasing responsibility in Sales, Marketing, and Revenue Management, ending that stretch as Director of Market Strategy for five hotels in downtown San Francisco. He then finished his career as General Manager of the Courtyard by Marriott in Emeryville, CA, retiring due to disability nine months after his diagnosis for ALS and thirty-four years after taking his first job with Marriott Hotels.
Shortly after their coast-to-coast move, Jeff and Geri welcomed their "California Kids" into the world, Jackson in 1990 and Tucker in 1993. The family enjoyed exploring the West together, usually spoiled by Marriott discounts and upgrades. The most fun and family bonding was on their many ski and snowboard trips to Lake Tahoe. Jack and Tuck have always been best of friends. They now live close to each other and enjoy playing music and skateboarding together. Their life-long bond, their kindness, and their shared sense of humor always provided Jeff with great joy.
Jeff was an all-around excellent athlete. He played multiple sports with his family and his junior and high school classmates. At Dartmouth College he played quarterback on the freshmen football team. After that season Jeff opted for the competitive slate of fraternity intramural sports, representing his house in basketball, hockey, skiing, tennis, softball, volleyball, swimming, ping pong, and of course flag football, where he called a pass on every play. Jeff continued to play basketball, golf, and skiing into his late-fifties.
Jeff extends a special thank you to all his classmates, co-workers and other friends who sent messages of love and support during his illness. An extra special message of love goes to the twenty+ Bones Gate fraternity brothers who maintained their relationships with Jeff through regular communication, ski trips, and other gatherings over the last thirty-eight years. They know who they are. Especially moving were the four mini-reunions they threw for for Jeff after his diagnosis.
Although Jeff’s life ended before we were ready, the time that he spent in our lives was memorable and full of joy.
A private memorial service is planned. Please consider a contribution in Jeff’s memory to the ALS Association at als.org in memory of “Jeffrey David Given.”
Attached is a link to post photos, stories and condolences to his memory board. https://www.kudoboard.com/boards/8NuzzYFV
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