John “Jay” F. DePew

John “Jay” F. DePew

IRVINGTON—John “Jay” F. DePew, 79, of Irvington passed away on Sunday, November 21, 2021.

Devoted husband of Rita DePew, Jay is survived by his daughter, Stacy Ralston and her husband Minter; daughter, Aimee DePew and her partner Sonny Wiehe; son, Keith DePew and his wife Jessie Crain; niece, Victoria Jaguar and her husband Daniel Nieder; and grandchildren, Minty, Jack, Kate and Stellar.

He was preceded in death by his sister, Connie Jagiella, in 1994.

Jay was born in Fishkill, New York, and raised in West Palm Beach, Florida, where he fell in love with the water and his wife, Rita, his true love of 55 years. Graduating from the Naval Academy in 1964, serving 4 1/2 years in the Navy, Jay then went on to have a career with Electronic Data Systems. EDS took him and his family around the world to places such as Iran, Kuwait, Holland and various states in the U.S. where numerous adventures were had and wonderful, close friendships were made.

Retirement brought Jay and Rita to Kilmarnock, where they were able to live their dream of sailing the Chesapeake Bay. The memories Jay created on the water with his family and friends are an enduring legacy of his joyful spirit and generous nature. He freely shared his wealth of knowledge of life, sailing and oysters with his children and grandchildren. He wouldn’t want it any other way: to be able to share his life with the people he loved and who loved him dearly.

Jay was also an avid runner. Pictures of numerous marathons that he ran individually and with his children were found throughout the house. He was always thankful that he finished because it was never about how fast he went, but rather that he crossed the finish line. “Jay has now crossed the finish line.” He will be truly missed by so many.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Jay’s memory to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research at michaeljfox.org or to the Rappahannock Westminster-Canterbury (RWC) foundation at foundation@rw-c.org in honor of Jay having Parkinson’s for 17 years but never letting that stop him from living a full life.

The family would like to thank the nursing staff in the RWC Health Center as well as the RWC At Home caregivers.

A celebration of Jay’s life will be held on the Chesapeake Bay with his family and close friends at a later date. 

Currie Funeral Home LLC of Kilmarnock handled the arrangements.