default avatar
Welcome to the site! Login or Signup below.
Logout|My Dashboard

Jeff Kooyman: A life renewed

Jeff sank into an abyss of drugs and mental illness for years. But he has found a brighter future in Lodi with his family, friends, faith and music.

Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Jeff Kooyman’s 1965 Lodi High School yearbook photo.

Related YouTube Video

Posted: Saturday, July 16, 2011 12:00 am | Updated: 7:27 am, Mon May 7, 2012.

Jeff Kooyman stands outside the Chevron station on Ham Lane, a generic cigarette in one hand and his size-12 boot propped on a cement planter. His black Dyno-glide, the beach cruiser he pedals powerfully around Woodbridge and Lodi, leans against the stucco building. It allows him to travel from his job to church to his Woodbridge care home. It is his freedom.

He takes another drag from his cigarette as he watches the cars pull in and drivers step out. They look up at Jeff, the 62-year-old newspaper delivery man.

Subscription Required

An online service is needed to view this article in its entirety. You need an online service to view this article in its entirety.

Have an online subscription?

Login now

Need an online subscription?



You must login to view the full content on this page.

Thank you for reading 20 free articles on our site. You can come back at the end of your 30-day period for another 20 free articles, or you can purchase a subscription at this time and continue to enjoy valuable local news and information. If you need help, please contact our office at 209-369-2761. You need an online service to view this article in its entirety.

Have an online subscription?

Login now

Need an online subscription?



Rules of Conduct

  • 1 Use your real name. You must register with your full first and last name before you can comment. (And don’t pretend you’re someone else.)
  • 2 Keep it clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually oriented language.
  • 3 Don’t threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
  • 4 Be truthful. Don't lie about anyone or anything. Don't post unsubstantiated allegations, rumors or gossip that could harm the reputation of a person, company or organization.
  • 5 Be nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
  • 6 Stay on topic. Make sure your comments are about the story. Don’t insult each other.
  • 7 Tell us if the discussion is getting out of hand. Use the ‘Report’ link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
  • 8 Share what you know, and ask about what you don't.
  • 9 Don’t be a troll.
  • 10 Don’t reveal personal information about other commenters. You may reveal your own personal information, but we advise you not to do so.
  • 11 We reserve the right, at our discretion, to monitor, delete or choose not to post any comment. This may include removing or monitoring posts that we believe violate the spirit or letter of these rules, or that we otherwise determine at our discretion needs to be monitored, not posted, or deleted.

Welcome to the discussion.


  • Bob Bechill posted at 12:16 pm on Mon, Jul 18, 2011.

    Bob Bechill Posts: 41

    This was a wonderful story. Great job Lauren. I often pass Mr. Kooyman on my morning walks to Tillies and downtown. He's a Lodi fixture, and I'm glad I now know more about him.

  • Tim Costner posted at 11:42 pm on Sat, Jul 16, 2011.

    Tim Costner Posts: 10

    Good story.

  • Nancy Cadena posted at 5:43 pm on Sat, Jul 16, 2011.

    Nancy Cadena Posts: 1

    I grew up down the street from Jeff and I remember the airplane rides he gave me. Swinging me high above his head, I touched the trees!

  • Wanda Easley posted at 1:28 pm on Sat, Jul 16, 2011.

    Wanda Easley Posts: 1

    The best paper carrier ever!!

  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 8:06 am on Sat, Jul 16, 2011.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    I have listened to Jeff play piano at St Anne's. I too have sat in the row behind the piano to watch and listen to him play. It is pleasant music to my ears.
    I have always felt you can touch someone's soul through music. Jeff has touched many and has made the world a better place. Thank you Jeff!



Popular Stories



Your News

News for the community, by the community.

Mailing List

Subscribe to a mailing list to have daily news sent directly to your inbox.

  • Breaking News

    Would you like to receive breaking news alerts? Sign up now!

  • News Updates

    Would you like to receive our daily news headlines? Sign up now!

  • Sports Updates

    Would you like to receive our daily sports headlines? Sign up now!

Manage Your Lists