Yohanan Shimon Svitavsky, 34, of East Middlebury

EAST MIDDLEBURY — I know a man with a lion’s heart.

I’ve known he was a very, very good man, but I didn’t know, until recently, just how incredible he was. In the last few days, I’ve heard testimonial after testimonial of his secret acts of kindness, that even I wasn’t aware of. One friend of his told me he’d been buying her and her children’s Christmas presents. Another told me of his help for their children. Another of his thoughtful surprise gift of Christmas, along with a note to this friend’s widowed mother.

I went to his house yesterday and found a note in his box by his door, from a friend who told him that he’d changed his and his wife’s life and he was deeply loved by them… And there were so many others, who loved and respected him so…

The man was my son, Yohanan Shimon Svitavsky, the Pride of My Life… Yohanan was taken off his ventilator a short while ago. After, his organs he’d wanted harvested were taken so that more lives can be deeply touched…

Yohanan suffered a catastrophic heart attack Sunday morning, Jan. 2, and was without oxygen for hours before help was called. But his heart will forever keep beating in mine.

He is survived by his mother, Cheryl Jimmo; sister, Annie Svitavsky; step-mother, Brenda Svitavsky; and his father, Jon Svitavsky. There will be a private ceremony held for Yohanan and donations may be sent in lieu of flowers, to TriValley Transit, 297 Creek Road, or Turning Point Center, 54A Creek Road, both in Middlebury, 05753. ◊

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