Jeffrey L. Hemker
It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of our beloved Jeff Hemker.
An amazing person to have as a friend or colleague, Jeff was always surrounded by many who wanted to enjoy his stories and wisdom at every event he attended. Jeff was also ready to help anyone he saw in need. His generosity, kindness, and intellect combined with his wit and dry sense of humor made up the beauty of his personality.
Jeffrey L. Hemker was born on August 16, 1955, in West Salem, Wisconsin. He was a 1979 graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Lacrosse with a degree in Political Science. Shortly after his graduation and the creation of the 401(k) plan, Jeff found his calling in retirement plan sales. Always a top salesperson, Jeff eventually became a National Sales Leader and was happiest when he could share his experience and knowledge with those that sought his advice and guidance. Known for launching and advancing many careers in retirement plan sales and marketing, Jeff would often be stopped and presented with long declarations of gratitude for how his efforts changed the trajectory of a life for the better. The depth of Jeff’s sincere happiness for the successes and accomplishments of others was a wonderful facet of his nature.
Jeff married Alisa, his wife of 21 years, in June of 2000, becoming stepfather to Christopher in the process. The three enjoyed life in Naperville, IL, before moving to Cypress, TX, in 2004. Jeff loved being a stepfather and always tried to instill a strong work ethic in Christopher. With Alisa, Jeff went above and beyond to make not just birthdays and holidays but every day special. It was important to him that Alisa and Christopher had everything they needed to feel safe and secure. This, he accomplished.
Even with thousands of reward miles and hotel points, Jeff did not travel for leisure. He was happiest at home with Alisa and their dogs Sophia Mia, RalphE and Stella Bella. Prior to this generation of pets, Jeff was often heard sharing the adventures of mischievous Charlie and sweet Chula dog. Recent holidays surrounded by Alisa, Christopher and niece Jenny and family were special to him.
Jeff was preceded in death by his parents Leonard and Joyce Indahl Hemker. He is survived by wife Alisa Ortiz Hemker, stepson Christopher Tristan, brother Steve (Gail) Hemker, nieces Andrea (Cory) Stocker, Angie (Scott Brenengen) Hemker, and Jenny (Romeo) Mendez, grandnieces McKenna and Reagan Stocker, and grandnephews Brock Brenengen and Reeve Mendez. Jeff also leaves behind his closest childhood friends Rahn (Judy) Pischke and Kenny (Tina) Meyer, whose presence at Jeff’s bedside brought comfort to his final days. Alisa and Christopher were with Jeff when he died.
For all who knew Jeff, the world will never be the same. A Celebration of Life will be announced as soon as arrangements are finalized.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Jeff’s memory can be made to the ASPCA at aspca.org/donate. Please choose memorial and use the email alhemker at gmail dot com for acknowledgements.
It was such a nice pleasure to meet you, and what you had planned for my father just took my breath away. It was so special to hear you tell us how he would just come over to talk with you. I think it brought him much comfort. Thank you for putting that Air Force article of him on your website. I am going to have a replica made of the painting of his plane to give you. Thank you again for all you have done to honor our dad. Love, The Gillilands
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Jeff was a great friend. His intelligence and wit is already sorely missed.
Sounds like Jeff was a wonderful person. I wish I had known him longer. Evidently he was dearly loved by so many and different fields of life. Looks like he left though wake up beautiful memories wherever he went. I hope they come to your mind every day
My Sincere Condolences to My Childhood Friend Alisa, and Son Christopher & The Hemker Family. Although I was never able to meet Jeff personally, just the things I’ve heard about him from Alisa and seeing how much he loved her and Christopher, as well as what I have read from his closest friends and those who knew him, I know he was an amazing Man. Jeff will truly be missed by All who were Blessed to have known Him. Jeff, May You Rest In Paradise..
Jeff’s humor kept us laughing and his professional acumen kept us on our toes; he imprinted the culture of our department with his indomitable spirit. The happiest years of my working life included those working with Jeff. He has left a legacy of influence through many lives touched over and over again. Our deepest sympathy and prayers to Alisa and Christopher, as well as Jeff’s extended family for suffering this irreplaceable loss. “Those we love don’t go away, they walk beside us every day.”
My most sincere condolences to Alisa and Christopher and the rest of those to whom Jeff meant so much. Jeff was a friend, a mentor and the consummate professional. Our industry has a huge hole in it with Jeff not among us. God Bless…
Cheers to a life well lived Jeff! It would be very easy for me to sad and tearful, but he would want us to remember him with a drink in his hand and laughing about something so hard that our sides hurt. I have so many fantastic memories that I will always cherish.
No more day old donuts for you sir.
Only the best for the best!
Jeff and I were sales managers for competing firms… We spent a lot of time together on the road together.
It was my pleasure to gotten to know jeff and get to spend time with him. i’m very sad to hear this and will miss the time we had together. Jeff spoke often and fondly of his family.
My thoughts and prayers are to the family. Rest in peace Jeff.
La vida me dio la oportunidad de conocer a Jeff trabajando en su casa de Cypress TX. siempre muy amable, muy buena persona, muy atento siempre muy de acuerdo en las desiciones con su esposa Alisa, siempre lo recordaremos con mucho cariño y lo siento mucho que ya no este aqui. Dios lo tenga en su santa gloria.
Jeff will be missed. He was my first cousin and was a Jr. Groomsmen in my parents wedding. He kept in close contact with his uncle, my father and my mother. Our prayers go out to his wife and stepson. This is a true loss.
Growing up professionally with Jeff was a true Blessing. He Loved the Retirement Plans Industry, his friends and Most of all Alisa! When I lost my only son, Jeff and Alisa were there for me. Alisa, while we will grieve Jeff, I can’t imagine your pain and the feeling of loss.
Please know how much I Loved him, Love you and I am here for you.
Jeff was a Legend in the La Crosse Wisconsin area and will be missed. We plan a toast of Dom Perigon -his favorite- in Jeff’s memory. Condolences to the family.
I never spent a day with Jeff that I didn’t laugh like a fool! Jeff brightened every corner of the room. When he married my dear friend Alisa the world hit the jackpot! See you on the other side dear friend.
Jeff was a very caring classmate. He always made the group laugh. His generosity was well appreciated. He will be missed.Alisa I’m sorry for your loss. You married a great guy! God Bless you all!
As a young adult I spent many moons with Jeff seeking the answers to life. It is heart warming to read here he found meaning, purpose and love with his life. A group of young adults who hung out with Jeff were not sure for many years what to do with our blessed lives. Jeff died as he lived with determination, and treated death as just another job in life. Fight to live. When it is time sure your loved ones will be cared for financially, finish up with the details then let go. Not a prefect mentor he showed that even an imperfect individual can show us goals in life can be accomplished. When you believe in yourself and that a meaningful life can happen with work and determination. Together, those of us who sent time with Jeff seek to live a increasingly better life. Thanks Jeff
As a young adult I spent many moons with Jeff seeking the answers to life. It is heart warming to read here he found meaning, purpose and love with his life. A group of young adults who hung out with Jeff were not sure for many years what to do with our blessed lives. Jeff died as he lived with determination, and treated death as just another job in life. Fight to live. When it is time be sure your loved ones will be cared for financially, finish up with the details then let go. Not a prefect mentor he showed that even an imperfect individual can show us goals in life can be accomplished. When you believe in yourself and that a meaningful life can happen with work and determination. Together, those of us who sent time with Jeff seek to live a increasingly better life. Thanks Jeff
Jeff was a true gentleman, in every sense of the word, he was a great mentor, role model and will really be missed in the retirement ( and all) communities. Words can not express the sorrow and void he leaves behind, but knowing that everywhere he went, his personality shined, that memory will always be there for us.
Tell we meet again !
We are so sorry to hear about your loss! Jeff was your rock! He was a man of strength and intellect and compassion. Some things never die, like love, memories, and a life well lived! May the memories of shared laughter and love comfort you at this time. We are here for you Alisa! With sympathy—Art & Jill Narcisi
The world has lost one remarkable human being. Jeff could make a dry presentation, hysterical, and made every mundane task at work, fun. As I’ve said to Alisa many times, I smile whenever I think of him…and what a tremendous gift that is to leave behind. I’m sorry I will not be at the service later in May, please know you are all in my thoughts. We are all better people because we knew Jeff. Love, Kim