JERSEYVILLE – Jeffrey Neal Klaas, born October 28, 1952 in Saint Louis, Missouri, passed away at 2:29 p.m., Saturday, May 20, 2023 at Alton Memorial Hospital.
Jeff was a man of inspiration.
He loved music and was gifted with a talent that allowed him to understand music at a level few others could.
He was a philosopher, a man who loved knowledge and the act of seeking wisdom.
In 1975, after serving in the United States Army, Jeff and his wife Debbie attended Open Door Fellowship in Nutwood, Illinois with his cousin, Gary. There, Jeff began to develop his relationship with His Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, answering a calling as a prophet for the Lord. Giving of himself to the church body for 47 years.
Jeff used his talent and love of music to share the words of God through songs of praise and worship. He fellowshipped and witnessed to hundreds of souls through the music that he wrote. In his music were words of wisdom and truth that God revealed to him and he shared with others. Through music, he inspired others to seek the relationship he had found with the Lord.
He was a teacher and mentor. Many people sat under him and learned about music and the structure of the word of the Lord. He shared his knowledge and insight with all that seeked truth and knowledge of the Lord, inspring others to seek and learn themselves.
He was a man of compassion with a true love for others. He helped those in need, giving up rooms in his own home to board those who did not have a place to go. He had the ability to reach out to others that many had labeled unreachable.
He was a joyful man and could tell stories bringing laughter to many through his tales. Children would gather around him to hear stories and songs and Jeff would never miss a moment to impart in them a bit of knowledge and inspiration.
Family was very important to Jeff. He was a proud father. He loved his daughter with all the strength in him. He shone like a beam at her accomplishments and would often speak of his love for her and his pride in watching her walk in the path God has put before her. He passed along to her his love and knowledge of music, and in true Sage fashion, his love of seeking wisdom and truth.
Jeff was an outstanding son and brother to his family. He had a bond with his brothers and sister that was one of strong love and devotion for them. He loved them so much that he shared with them his most precious possession, his love of the Lord and his relationship with Christ. Many stories of his childhood in the orchards of Calhoun County and with his gang of friends from Wallis Avenue would often be shared among circles of family and friends around the table or a campfire resulting in laughter and smiles late into the evening. Jeff truly cherished his family and every moment he had with them.
Jeff was a loyal friend to those that were lucky enough to call him friend. He developed relationships beyond friendship, to individuals that were as brothers and sisters to him. He was a tried and true friend and stood by them, encouraging and giving inspiration and loyalty.
Jeff gave of his heart and of his soul, a true friend to those that knew him, a teacher to those who sought truth with him and an artist to those blessed to hear his music and the message it gave.
Jeff was preceded in death by his mother, Joan Marie (Tebeau) Klaas; his father, Harold Leonard Klaas; his brother, Dennis Michael Klaas and a nephew, Matthew Paul Klaas.
Jeff is survived by his daughter, Nicole Klass-Storz and a son in-law, Clark Storz of Maryland Heights, Missouri; Nicole’s mother, Debbie Eldridge of Jerseyville; his brothers and sisters in-law, Tommy John and Dollie Klaas of Kane, Randy and Kathy Klaas of St. Peters, Missouri; a sister and brother in-law, Cathy and Richard McMullen of Troy, Missouri; many nieces and nephews; and lifelong friends, Jimmy and Suzie Cox, Martin and Melissa Smay; along with many brothers and sisters in Christ.
Visitation will be held from 4 to 7 p.m., Thursday, May 25, 2023 at Open Door House of Praise in Jerseyville, where funeral services will be conducted at 10 a.m., Friday. Pastor Martin Smay will officiate.
Burial will follow at Oak Grove Cemetery in Jerseyville.
Memorials may be given to Open Door House of Praise.
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