If you didn’t notice already, there is a black box commemorating the death of Jeffrey Seyfert on the flag of our front page this week.
Jeff had been in charge of the delivery of our paper since the first one was published on Feb. 6, 2004. To put that in perspective, this is our 444th issue of the Coastal Point, and Jeff had been the man responsible each and every week of getting the Point to you. Add in special sections we have published over the years, and that number soars even higher. He had battled sickness for several years, seen holidays come and go, summer traffic change his timing and faced numerous other challenges in delivering the Coastal Point, but he and his wife, Diane, have made sure that the paper got out each and every week.
He was solid. He was dependable. He was always a positive reflection on all of us when he delivered because he was professional and courteous. He was our rock.
But he was much more than our “delivery guy.” Jeff was part of the Coastal Point family, and news of his passing caused many tears, both in the office and from former Pointies who have moved on to new chapters in their lives.
Jeff was an avid fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers, and was usually wearing a Steelers hat or shirt whenever he stepped out of his house. He had a running “battle” with our editor, who is a Baltimore Ravens fan, and the two of them would trade verbal volleys while laughing and smiling the entire time. He could never just swing by the office to pick up something and get back on the road because one or two employees — often our classified diva Jane Johnson — would corner him to engage him in conversation. He was just that likeable.
“Jeff was the best I’ve ever known, as far as delivering papers,” said Coastal Point Publisher Susan Lyons. “He and Diane have always taken the job very seriously, and have always gotten the delivery done on time, no matter the circumstances. He’s going to be sorely missed. He was part of the family.”
It has long been a tradition in the newspaper business to put a black flag on the paper when an editor or publisher passes away. A quick discussion in our office told us all we needed to know in terms of how the staff felt — they wanted Jeff to be honored in the best way a newspaper can honor one of its own. Hence, the black box on our flag this week.
All of us here at the Coastal Point want to send our thoughts and prayers to Diane and the rest of Jeff’s family as they work their way through this horrible loss. He leaves behind four children and seven grandchildren, and a collection of siblings and friends.
Rest in peace, Jeff Seyfert. If a man is judged by how he is remembered by others, your rewards will be great.