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Jeremy Efrain Ramirez

Jeremy Efrain Ramirez Obituary
LAFAYETTE -- Jeremy Efrain Ramirez passed into eternal peace on Thursday, Oct. 28, 2010. The angels hovered above him, gently lifting his spirit into the heavenly hands of God, and into our hearts and memories forever. He was 21. Blessed with an infectious 'million dollar smile' and unforgettable laugh, 'J-Ram,' as he was known to his many friends, touched the lives of everyone who was fortunate enough to know this active, vibrant and caring young man.

Born in Ridgewood on Nov. 14, 1988, he was a lifelong resident of Lafayette. He attended Lafayette Township Elementary School, where he played baseball for the Lafayette Tigers, and runningback for the High Point Hawks football team. In the seventh grade he excelled in baseball, playing in the All-Star game. In the eighth grade, as a runningback for the Hawks, his team proudly took the 2002 division championship. Although a serious and dedicated competitor, Jeremy was also affectionately known for his lighthearted pranks, and was rewarded for his comedy by running many punishment laps after practice. However, his coaches were always fond of this young, hardworking team-player. At High Point Regional High School, Jeremy continued his love of sports. Proudly representing the Wildcats, he was a powerful and relentless runningback, just as he was in grammar school. He was also a member the High Point wrestling and track teams. His strong, compact frame made him a natural athlete, and his exploits on the field are remembered fondly by his teammates.

Graduating from High Point in 2007, Jeremy attended Sussex County Community College, where he studied criminal justice while holding down two jobs to help pay for his tuition. His love of helping people guided him toward the goal of one day becoming a law enforcement officer. Jeremy also had another proud goal to someday serve his country in the United States Air Force. He was truly an inspiration to his friends and family. Although he no longer competed in scholastic sports after graduating high school, Jeremy stayed active and lived his life to the fullest, as some of us only wished we could. He was always looking for new challenges and adventures. When cliff diving, snowboarding, and weight-lifting weren't enough, he began training in mixed martial arts for a new challenge, hoping to one day compete inside the cage. Another of Jeremy's great loves was motorcycling. He loved riding the winding back roads of Sussex County with one of his greatest friends in the world, Mark Khoury, also of Lafayette, who tragically predeceased Jeremy in September. Jeremy and Mark were inseparable since childhood, and their friendship was such a bond that they considered themselves brothers. They now ride together forever on their motorcycles through the winding roads of heaven with the sun on their faces and the wind at their backs under the watchful eyes of God. Jeremy was also a great animal lover since childhood, bringing home injured wildlife to nurse back to health, or to seek proper veterinary care for them. The small creatures of the world who sometimes need a helping hand have lost a great friend and protector, and they will forever be grateful for the love and care he selflessly gave to them. The world has also lost a young man who was a great lover of life, a friend to anyone and everyone, and a person who gave so much to so many, and asked for so little in return. A person who found joy in the simplest of life's pleasures and a great spirit who refused to be kept down no matter how much the odds were stacked against him. Jeremy's philosophy was simple. With a smile, he would say 'bring it on!' When you see a beautiful summer sunset, or a child's joyful laughter, Jeremy will be there with you. When you see an injured or abused animal, please help them in any way you can, or make a donation to a shelter. Jeremy will be eternally grateful to you. When you're riding your motorcycle on your favorite road, Jeremy and Mark will be riding out in front, looking out for you and guiding you safely home to your loved ones. When you're driving in your car and you see a motorcycle, they will also remind you to please give some space. And lastly, when you're scared, alone, or feel helpless, a hand will touch your shoulder that will give you strength, and a voice will reassuringly say 'Don't be afraid -- I'm here with you..' It will be Jeremy watching over you and showing you the way. He will be sadly missed by all who knew and loved him.

Also predeceased by his loving grandfathers, Efrain Ramirez and Jorge Ramia, grieving survivors who will cherish Jeremy's memory forever include his proud mother Denise Arcykiewicz of Lafayette; his loving father Efrain Ramirez and his wife Leticia, of Tobyhanna, Pa.; sister Jamie Arcykiewicz of Lafayette, who loved and looked up to her big brother; and his stepbrother and sisters, Robert Almedina, Melanie Almedina, and Mackenzie Ramirez. He is also survived by his grandparents, Liz Ramia of Florida, Richard and Joyce Takach of Hackensack, Laura Ramirez of Florida; his stepfather Mark Arcykiewicz of Beach Lake, Pa.; as well as several aunts, uncles, cousins, and many friends everywhere. Last but not least, Jeremy is survived by his faithful friend and companion, Diesel the Dog, whom Jeremy rescued as an abused animal and took Diesel in to give him the love and friendship he so desperately needed.

Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, at the Smith-McCracken Funeral Home, 63 High St., Newton. Visitation will be held Monday from 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m. at the funeral home.

Memorial donations may be made to your favorite animal rescue project. Online condolences may be offered at www.smithmccrackenfuneralhome.com.

Published in The New Jersey Herald on Oct. 31, 2010
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