Jeffery Cummings

Jeffery Scott Cummings

Saturday, July 24th, 1954 - Friday, March 12th, 2021
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I’m definitely not worried about finding the right words to commemorate my dad but it’s still just mind blowing that I’m even in the position to have to. I’m also not looking for any additional motivation to pen this thing perfectly, but I decided to start up Lynard Skynard’s Second Helping album and grab a bud light anyways to get on my Jeff-vibe. As his only son, I know we had a more unique relationship than anyone else who may be reading this but still, where do you start with something like this? So, as the guitar riff opens up to “Sweet Home Alabama” and the condensation slides slowly down this beer can, I’m gently reminded of the commonality that we all, most likely, shared with him, a damn good time. I know from his stories, your stories, and my own personal experiences that Jeff Cummings loved a good get together with friends old and new, music cranked loud, and a cooler full of cold beer. Seriously, how many of you sat in the garage or on a tailgate in the driveway and watched that blue-eyed man laugh and drink and just felt...happy? I’m going to sit and enjoy this track alone for a minute.

These are the times I will miss the most. But as my dad it was so much more than just a beer and a joke. And as I slowly reflect and think “The Ballad of Curtis Loew” comes on and seems an appropriate transition to get more personal. (For those of you who were not blessed with a classic rock instructor as a father, this particular song is about a young boy who’s obsessed with an old man who plays music in exchange for spare change to buy booze) To state it simply, dad taught me everything and it’s safe to say I had some obsessive periods with him myself. From learning how/when to use four-wheel drive, grilling a ribeye, skiing and wakeboarding, nailing a bank shot in the driveway HORSE competition, hand washing your truck, restringing a weed eater (definitely took me more than one try, but dad always got it on the first attempt) vacuuming in perfectly even rows, and how to make your grocery list follow the aisles of the store for maximum efficiency. I could go on and on...kinda like Freebird, whenever that track comes up. Different album but I’m thinking we’re gonna shuffle some tracks here shortly. We did it all and we did it together. He always let me tag along. Anywhere. And we were happy. Some of the best memories I have with him are at the lake and at the pool in the summertime. Classic Jeff mental image coming at you: gold framed Ray Ban aviators, US Flag swim trunks, gold chain with cross hanging over the forest of chest hair, and he’s coming in hot to jump in with his famous can opener and splash everyone around. God, those were the best summers. I’m getting another beer.

In thinking about those warm Texas summers and our memorable times, I’m also reminded of our countless Saturdays on the baseball diamond and at the soccer fields. There were consecutive seasons throughout my childhood, where I would need to be at baseball practice on Monday and Wednesday, with soccer practice on Tuesday and Thursday. All to play back-to-back games all day Saturday. Dad never missed a practice nor a game. Seriously. Never. And while that memory speaks for itself and allowed me to meet some of my (still) current lifelong friends, it wasn’t until later in my young adulthood that I realized how challenging of a commitment all of that can be for a working father and husband. But he did. Consistently. Man, those were fun days. And to those of you who know my dad, you know of his fierce loyalty to Auburn football... that same guy sacrificed Saturday after Saturday and missed how many Auburn football games to spend the day coaching from the dugout and cheering from the sidelines? Wow. That’s a loyalty and love that I now only understand as a father myself and I can’t wait to replicate these treasured memories with my three boys. Thank you, Dad.

You know, my dad didn’t just teach me “skills” and how to accomplish certain tasks, there was also this other category of teachings (aside from being educated on who the actual kings of classic rock are and how to balance an equalizer while hooking up 7.2 surround sound) that I would call life lessons. For example, his mentality was always “don’t buy the cheap stuff, buy the good one up front, that way you only have to buy it once” and that’s what we did. I never wanted for nothin’ growing up and had a childhood that most would dream of. Dad always put mom first and made that clear to everyone; in doing that, things just organically seemed to always work out. Always. These are just some of the simpler lessons that take time and maturity to truly understand how impactful they can be, but Dad’s consistency is what helped drive it home. Taking care of your stuff and taking care of your people are things that I will always do and pass along to my boys over the course of life, so thank you, Dad.

I’ve asked myself recently, “what am I supposed to do without you?” But I find deep satisfaction in knowing that I’ll be just fine because you’ve taught me everything I needed to know in order to be my own man. This Bud’s for you, old man. I love you. And I can’t quite explain how bad I am going to miss you.
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Paul Kirby

Posted at 01:16pm
I am so sorry for your families loss. It has been a long, long time since I have spoken to Jeff but in reading the tribute you posted I feel as if it could have been yesterday that we spoke. Now I think I'll grab a beer, put on some Skynyrd & maybe some 38 Special, turn it up, turn my cap around backwards, close my eyes & listen for Cummings to say "High Oh Silver" Love Yall

Kelly Burns

Posted at 03:54am
Over the last few days, one phrase I’ve heard repeatedly was that my Dad was “one of a kind.” And he truly was. He loved his family, his friends, loud music and Auburn football. I will miss you more than you know, Dad. Until we meet again - Cheers! Love Always - Your baby girl ♥️

Jena Burns

Posted at 11:19pm
I will never forget when I first met Jeff. He had me laughing from the moment he introduced himself. Welcomed me into his home and treated me like I was one of his own daughters! His oldest daughter Kelly is married to my oldest brother and I know how important he is not only to my brother but to his baby girls! I could call him or Rhonda any day or night if I ever needed anything at all and they would be there. This family is such a genuine, fun, full of love people. Jeff you will be deeply missed, and we will celebrate you everyday until we see you again ! My prayers are with Rhonda, Kelly, Erin and Kyle through this hard time. I am honored to know these wonderful people, and to have known Jeff Cummings!

Tammy Steele

Posted at 04:35pm
Jeff Cummings was one of a kind and one of the very best friends I’ve ever had! I was truly blessed the day I met him and his precious family and we’ve been “one big happy family” ever since! His smile and laugh would light up a room and bring so much joy to all of those around him. I’m so grateful for the love and guidance he gave to my children through the years and for the friendship he and I shared. Our families have been together for so many special time...those memories will last a lifetime. My prayers are with my best friend and his beautiful wife, Rhonda, and his amazing children, Kelly, Erin and Kyle. He loved you all so much and was always so proud of each and every one of you. Jeffro...until we meet again, my friend!! Love you, Tammers

Gilbert Huey

Posted at 05:16pm
Jeff was one of my best and closest friends at RCHS. We had similar taste in music: Santana, Traffic, Allman Brothers, etc. We both loved muscle cars. He loved Auburn and I loved Alabama, but we got along. I will always remember fondly the times we spent growing up together. Rest in Peace my dear old friend.
Lanny Huey

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