John Jay Javenkoski

There’s a campfire burning, hot embers, and cool flame.
Laughter and light dance across the smiling faces of family and friends.
Sitting nearby, the keeper of the fire, steady as the moon in a darkened sky, smiles, stands up and walks away.

Our beloved friend, husband, daddy, brother, and son, John Jay Javenkoski, left our fireside on February 10, 2020, slung his arm over Jesus’ shoulder and strolled into a field of fireflies and cricket song.

John was born on January 26, 1972, in Appleton, Wis., the youngest son of Joseph James and Ann Marie (Bronk) Javenkoski. He grew up in Appleton, much loved by his siblings Lori (Dirk) Holman, Bob (Lora) Javenkoski and Jerry Javenkoski. He attended Appleton West High School, graduating in 1990, making many friends with his quiet smile and kind-hearted ways.

He attended UW-Stevens Point from 1991 to 1995, where he had a lot of fun, made lifelong friends, and by kismet, crossed paths with his twin flame, Lea.

He married Lea (Conway) on September 21, 1996, exactly three years and one day after they met for the first time. They promised to love each other forevermore and jumped headlong into life together. They lived in Sheboygan, Milwaukee, and Wauwatosa before moving back to the Stevens Point area.

John worked as a chemist in industries that made bleach, car headlight metals, and synthetic DNA for the Human Genome Project. His last place of employment was at OrthoMolecular Products in Plover for over 13 years, where he loved his job as a formulations engineer. His work ethic was unstoppable, so Lea snuck in vacations whenever she could. They traveled the U.S. extensively, especially in their 20’s, returning to Oak Creek Canyon in Sedona, Ariz. many times, as it was his favorite happy place.

On July 26, 2009, John and Lea became parents to their daughter Grace, who stole her Daddy’s heart the second she wrapped her tiny hand around his pinky finger. She was the light of his life and within ten years, he imbued in her, his goofy sense of humor, love of cuddling, and his capacity for big love. He showed her how to be brave, kind and grow wiser and stronger through both life’s hardships and delights.
John was even-keeled, incredibly smart, and was one of the best friends anyone could ask for.

He loved to be outdoors, camping, hiking and heartily enjoyed a Porterhouse steak and IPA around a firepit on Lake Metonga. He loved making his house a home. If Lea could imagine it, he might roll his eyes, but he would make it happen. He absolutely loved making Lea laugh uncontrollably, which he did for over 27 years.

John battled cancer for just under four years, putting his spirit and body through the ultimate tests of strength and perseverance in order to stay with us as long as he could. He died unafraid, knowing he would be with Jesus in eternal life. He will be missed forever, but many hearts rest easy with the knowledge he is now whole and pain-free.

He is survived by his “favorite gals”, Lea and Grace, his mother Ann and his siblings; his siblings-in-law; Jamie (Nancy) Conway and Sally Conway (Henry Johnson). John had nieces and nephews he loved very much; Dirk Jr., Isaac and Blake Holman, Brandon Javenkoski and Macquel Brown, and Gabrielle Javenkoski, Tommy (Sara) Johnson and their children Tuff and Rory, Brooke (Mike Uliana) Johnson, and Rebecca, Luke and Elizabeth Conway.

He was preceded in death by his father, Joseph; his in-laws, Jim and Cindy (Marvin) Conway; and future brother-in-law Thomas Vollrath. “It’s ok, babe.”

A Celebration of Life service for John will be held at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 15, 2020, at the Shuda Funeral Chapel, 3200 Stanley St. Friends and family will gather to share memories from 3 p.m. until the time of services at Shuda’s.

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