Apple Valley man dies from cancer
Jeff Payette fought a ‘heroic battle’ against the disease
Jeff Payette of Apple Valley had planned to mark his third year as a cancer survivor by serving as the honorary chairperson at the Rosemount Relay for Life on June 22 and 23.
But the 50-year-old father of three died June 10 after what his family described as a heroic battle against esophageal cancer.
Payette, who was born Nov. 24, 1961, was diagnosed three years ago with the inoperable cancer, which he said in a January 2012 Thisweek story that doctors said was caused, in part, by years of erosion created by acid reflux.
“It was devastating,” he said in January. “But I have too much to live for. I don’t have time to get depressed.”
After his diagnosis Payette endured chemotherapy, radiation treatments and financial burdens, for which a benefit was organized earlier this year.
“Through this whole time, everyone’s been so helpful,” he said at the time. “I don’t think I have enough thank yous to give.”
Payette, a custodian at Scott Highlands Middle School, was a Marine for eight years, serving in Desert Storm and Desert Shield.
He is survived by wife, Maria; sons, Joshua, Alex and Miguel; father, Jack (Mary); brothers, Tony, Steve (Barb); sisters, Mary (Tim) Duecker, Chris (Steve) Borman; and many nieces and nephews.
Click here to read his obituary.