JON J. CORNELL at age 56 went home to be with the Lord on Tuesday, July 9, 2013. Beloved husband of Heather (nee Rizen); loving father of Justyn Brown, Vincent Cornell, and Maria Cornell; brother of three; son-in-law of Charles and Carol Rizen; friend of many, he was loved by all; loved his family, his Lord, and his work passion-motorcycles; professional drag-racer for over 30 years and a firm believer of "circumstance and timing".
When Jon was diagnosed he only told his close friends and family, he wanted to maintain some privacy about the diagnosis. I'll never forget the conversation Jon had with me about the type of cancer he had and that it was very treatable thanks to some recent research. In fact the drug they started to give him in February had just been approved by the FDA in December. I remember how hopeful he was about this treatment. Jon never lost hope, he never gave up. He not only kept up with all the activities at home he also ran his own business. Even on some of his most painful days, he had to be at the shop. Jon loved everything about motorcycles or just about anything that went fast and he turned that passion, his work, into drive to keep moving forward over the next year and a half.
Jon has to be the most amazing person I've ever met. His passion for life, family, his courage and his never ending hope should be an inspiration to us all. He had a quote from James Dean hanging on the wall in his office, it said "Dream as if you'll live forever, live as if you'll die today." That is how Jon lived his life. He captured every moment as if it were going to be his last and cherished everyone of those moments. He truly dreamed as if he was going to live forever. He always had so much going on at the shop. He didn't just plan for the following week or month, he would think years out. He had his dream and he was living it, every day.
The research done to create the drug Jon was taking was made possible by donations. The drug may not have cured his illness, but it gave him time he needed to put the finishing touches on everything that was important to him. It's this hope, this determination to find a cure that will one day end this terrible disease. Help join the fight! Tell everyone you know Jon's story, speak out about cancer and donate what you can. The research done today might help save someone you love later on.