Jeffrey Jordan Sr., who worked with youth as director/manager of a number of local recreation centers and was active in his church, died August 29, 2017, at his home in Mt Healthy, Ohio. He was 66.
Mr. Jordan was born on April 5, 1952, to the union of Edward and Millie Jordan (nee Simmons) in Cincinnati, Ohio. He was the eldest of five children, including Angie, Johnny, Anna, and Quint. Music was instilled in them at an early age, and the five of them would sing at family gatherings.
Through his formative years, Mr. Jordan received his education within the Cincinnati Public Schools system, having attended Harriet Beecher Stowe School and Samuel Ach Junior High. There were many activities he participated in while in school. He and his comrades formed a male drill team that performed at events throughout the city and their trademark was red tams. He also reached the rank of Life Scout which is the second highest level within the Boy Scouts of America. As a member of the class of 1970, he graduated from Hughes High School. His love for education took him to Central State University where he was a part of a singing group called the Deltones, not to be confused with his favorite group, the Delphonics. As a member in this group, they traveled to other Historically Black Colleges and Universities to entertain.
As a youth, Mr. Jordan attended St John A.M.E. Zion Church. After he heard about the Holiness Church, his life and membership changed. Pastor Quick fostered his love for young people as a worker in the youth department.
At age 5, Mr. Jordan’s first position was as a lifeguard, and he subsequently worked up the ladder in Cincinnati Recreation Commission to become a director/manager of several centers and pools in the east and west regions. At that time, there were 42 pools and he worked them all. If you didn’t know him from the pools or centers, then maybe it was from Citizens on Patrol, Reds Rookie Success League, George Foster Baseball Foundation, or the various 3-on-3 basketball and tennis tournaments that he facilitated throughout the city.
He provided guidance in several capacities both through work and as a volunteer. He served over 25 years with the American Red Cross and until his transition, he sat on the board of directors at the Winton Hills Medical Center.
As he came full circle back to A.M.E. Zion, Mr. Jordan was motivated to do the work of an evangelist by the grassroots efforts of his parents. He was ordained as a minister and catapulted into public ministry under the pastoral leadership of Jermaine Armour. He was a man of few words but of strong faith. This entailed the tithing of his time to the church, including his involvement in such activities as his involvement in the 6 a.m. prayer service on Wednesdays, a prison ministry, digging wells in Guyana, teaching Sunday School, and running tent revivals on their farm in Cynthiana, Ky.
He is most remembered by his summers spent at the day camps that he directed for Cincinnati Recreation Commission. While there, he touched many lives through his willingness to be a mentor and coach. He introduced inner city kids to activities that helped to enrich their lives. He organized camping trips, outdoor events like Red River Gorge expeditions, taught swim lessons, and frequently gave leadership talks.
He was always a proponent of hard work, and he expected everyone to pull their weight. After his retirement, he took on another job at the Powell Crosley YMCA where he taught swim lessons and served as a life guard.
He loved to eat sweets, and he was known to eat a whole cake or pie before he got home just like his father did.
He enjoyed propping up a projector, covering the windows with a sheet, and showing karate movies until everyone fell asleep.
Mr. Jordan was preceded in death by his parents Edward and Millie Jordan.
He is survived by his wife Shirley Ann Jordan; two daughters, Leslie Irvin and Jessica Jordan; a son Jeffrey Jordan Jr.; a son in-love (not a typo) Michael Smith (Laconia Wilson-Smith); grandsons, Ryan Irvin, Montae Walton Jr., Michael Smith Jr,, Lionel Hill, Joshua Irvin-Talbert; granddaughters, Jameela Wilson-Smith, and London Jordan; great-grandchildren, Syrianna Irvin, Shania Irvin, and Ryan Irvin Jr.; siblings, Angela Denson, Jonathan Jordan (Sharon), Andrea Jordan, Quintin Jordan (Ramenia); an aunt, Marilyn Jordan; and other relatives and friends.
Services were officiated by Pastor Jermaine Armour at St. Mark A.M.E. Zion Church at 9208 Daly Road, Cincinnati, on September 6. Burial was at Crown Hill Memorial Park & Mausoleum, 11825 Pippin Road, Cincinnati.