Community remembers Jeffrey ‘Flynnie’ Flynn
The community is mourning the death of Jeffrey Flynn, a longtime resident and 16-year employee with Summit County government who died in a suspected boating accident on the Eagle River on Sunday, June 6.
Flynn moved to Summit County nearly 30 years ago, according to County Manager Scott Vargo, who called him a friend as well as a co-worker. He began his time with the county government in June 2005, working his way up from combination inspector to senior inspector and plans examiner.
Vargo said his colleagues at the county government, as well as in the greater community, would be deeply impacted by Flynn’s death and that all would remember him fondly.
“He really enjoyed life, and he is going to be sorely missed by the Summit County government and by the Summit County community,” Vargo said. “It is a tough day for folks at the county and for folks that knew Jeff.”
Flynn, known as Flynnie to those close to him, was born in Ohio and grew up largely in Connecticut. He graduated from the University of Dayton in 1991 and made his way to Summit County.
“It was your traditional transplant story of being motivated by the outdoors and the beauty of Summit County,” said Pat Flynn, Jeffrey’s brother.
At work, Vargo said Flynn was someone who was always willing to step up and take on larger roles when needed, go out of his way to help his co-workers with whatever problems they had, and was well-known and respected by the building community he worked with closely.
In his personal life, he was described as a people person who was approachable by all and enthusiastic about using his expertise to help friends with their projects around the house. His friends said he took a genuine interest in their lives and was sure to ask about their kids and loved ones whenever he saw them. Those who knew him also said he was compassionate, honest and always willing to tell it like it is.
“Jeff was the greatest friend anybody would want to have,” Kieth Hogan said. “He was funny, caring, always would help with anything — just an amazing person.”
Flynn lived in Frisco and was a mainstay of businesses in town. He frequently went with friends to bars and restaurants to enjoy an evening out. His friends said he was popular, and people would flag him down for a chat or to hear a story wherever he went.
“If you went out to Greco’s or 5th Avenue Grille, he would be there,” said Dawn Austin, who knew Flynn for about 25 years. “You could go out by yourself in Frisco and know that you’d see Flynnie and have a friend and always have a good chat. He’d be downstairs at Ollie’s watching the games, supporting the whole community and local businesses. He always had a smile and a laugh and a hug. …
“He was a big participant in the community. I think a lot of us in Summit didn’t all bring our family with us, but we built our own family. And I’d say he was a part of a lot of people in Frisco’s family.”
Flynn was a big sports fan who loved the Notre Dame and Cleveland Browns football teams, and he’d show up to Ollie’s Pub and Grill early on Sundays to watch games. He also enjoyed skiing at Copper Mountain Resort and playing pond hockey and softball. Though, perhaps his biggest passion was golf, and he was always inviting others out to battle him on the course and share a few laughs.
Hogan said he and others were hoping to set up a memorial golf tournament in Flynn’s honor sometime in the future.
Flynn also enjoyed music and would often attend concerts at Dillon Amphitheater, Red Rocks Amphitheatre or venture out around Summit County to find live bands.
“We went to many Red Rocks Widespread Panic shows together with many other Frisco locals,” Jonny Greco said. “That was kind of a right of passage to summer every June. So for many years, it was hotels together down there, making plans to all be with each other, someone going in early and saving space so we could all be together for those concerts. … Music was a big part of his life.”
Pat Flynn said there would be a celebration of life ceremony for his brother from 3-7 p.m. Sunday, June 13, at the Frisco Day Lodge. The family is also planning another service June 21 in Connecticut. In lieu of flowers, Flynn’s family is asking that individuals make a donation to The Summit Foundation.
As residents around Frisco, Summit County and beyond begin to grieve his loss, it’s clear that Flynn’s death — and life — has undoubtedly left a lasting mark on the community.
“He was considered a life-of-the-party sort of guy; that was kind of his outgoing personality,” Pat Flynn said. “A lot of people in the community knew Jeff. He was single, but he considered all of his friends around that area to be his family.”
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