POWHATAN – The family of 19-year-old John Jeffers remembered their late son last week for his service to his community and his passion for life.
Jeffers, 19, of Powhatan, died on Saturday, Feb. 13 from injuries he sustained while in a single-vehicle accident. Virginia State Police responded to the scene at 8:57 a.m. in in the 2700 block of Route 60 (Anderson Highway).
The preliminary investigation reveals that a 2008 Toyota Tacoma was heading east on Route 60 when it ran off the road right and struck a tree. Jeffers, the driver and sole occupant, was wearing a seatbelt. He was transported for treatment but succumbed to his injuries at the hospital.
Jeffers’ mother, Jackie Jeffers, said her son was on his way to work at OfficeMax when he hit a patch of ice on Route 60 and his truck went into a tree. He was taken to Chippenham Hospital, where they did everything they could to save him. She said she was grateful not only to the doctors and nurses who tried to save his life but the people who stopped at the accident scene to help and the EMTs who transported him and helped keep him alive long enough for his family to say goodbye.
John Jeffers was a Powhatan High School Class of 2019 graduate who participated in JROTC and achieved the rank of cadet staff sergeant, his mom said. It was his time with the program that began his deep adoration for the military and the rich history of the United States of America. He also completed his time in the Cub Scouts with the Arrow of Light Achievement, the highest level of achievement within the Cub Scouts.
Jeffers worked as the acting assistant manager at OfficeMax for four months, while also attending John Tyler Community College.
“He was described by his supervisor as a being very passionate, committed, detailed-oriented, and well-liked and respected member of his team. Johnny had big ambitions for himself and wanted to become an engineer, designing military equipment and technology,” Jackie Jeffers said.
Outside of work and school, Jeffers was knowledgeable about a wide array of subjects and he enjoyed sharing that knowledge with others, his mom said. His hobbies included kayaking, driving his dad’s boat at Lake Anna, playing video games, hunting, and painting his model planes and tanks. He had a special interest in history, especially around the topic of World War II.
When Jeffers was younger, he was diagnosed with autism, which often served as a roadblock to his success, Jackie Jeffers said.
“He made great strides in his life to overcome the roadblock of social deficits and become a confident young man. We are hearing so many stories about how he helped others, stood up for people who were bullied, and stood up for those who had disabilities,” she said.
Laura McFarland may be reached at Lmcfarland@powhatantoday.com.