Thursday, January 21, 2010

Jimbobs Obituary

Jimbob worked for Hewlett-Packard for 19 years. But later in life, his family said, the 58-year-old Sunnyvale man drank too much. He lost his job. He lost his home. And Sunday, he lost his life.

For some reason, Jimbob ran along Highway 101 south of Lawrence Expressway about 10 p.m., and was killed when a Dodge Neon struck him.

His family wonders if drinking had anything to do with Jimbobs behavior.

"He liked to drink," said Jimbob's son,. "He was a musician and had his guitar with him. The driver said he held up his guitar over his head right before he died. In fact, the guitar made it, even though my father didn't."

The Santa Clara County coroner's office typically takes about six weeks for a toxicology report to come back to determine the cause of death, including what was inside someone's system before death. The California Highway Patrol did not arrest the driver of the Dodge.

"I feel sorry for the man," Jimbob's son said of the driver. "I'd like to let him know that."

Similar sentiments are shared by Jimbob's other two children and four grandchildren. One son said he kept a "good relationship" with his father despite his life choices. (that is because that son has made the same choices)

Jimbob was twice divorced and homeless, and frequented the 7-Eleven on Wildhorse Avenue, next to one of his other favorite spots, Humphys Lounge, his son said.

Jimbob earned a small living through tips from playing his guitar outside the convenience store.

"People called him the Guitar Man," his son said. "Everyone loved him."

Jimbob was let go from HP about 10 years ago, his son said, when the company offered to pay for a substance abuse rehabilitation program and his father declined. He said his father had worked in the shipping and die-casting departments.

Jimbob slept in several spots. Often, he camped out at a park and sometimes lived along the freeway where he was killed.

One lady said over the five years that she knew him, she bought Jimbob cat food for his pets, and sometimes ordered pizzas for him and his friends. She and her neighbors occasionally paid Jimbob to move furniture or help string Christmas lights. She said he watched out for her kids when they played outside.

"He never panhandled," she said. "And if you hired him for a job, he was there on time and did the work."

The lady said she enjoyed Jimbob guitar playing on the weekends in front of 7-Eleven.

"He played and sang for people," she said. He was family to everyone in the neighborhood."

Ok I guess I am not mad more, just sad for his addiction and sad for the loss the family is feeling right now. Jimbob was a son, father and a friend to people despite the fact he was a drunk.

This is from San Jose Mercury News by Lisa Fernandez Edit and commentary by R. Quilter