After 38-year-old Jered Sperling, of Lodi, was fatally shot after being carjacked in Kent, Wash. on Monday, his family and friends have been mourning the loss of their loved one.
Lori Woodard, Sperling’s cousin, described him as a “loving, happy, adventurous man” in a statement on behalf of the family emailed to the News-Sentinel on Thursday.
“The world has lost an amazing light,” said Woodard. “Jered was a man’s man, a husband, a son, a friend, a protector and a brother to all, gone too soon. He only wanted the best for each and every person and he worked tirelessly to make a difference in his neighborhood and took great pride in his job and his life.”
According to Kent news source King5.com, Sperling managed Kent East Self Storage and Joshua Park, owner of neighboring business Buck’s Teriyaki, remembered Sperling as a hard worker and a good neighbor.
“He told me if he puts 110 percent in, he’ll get 110 percent back. I see him 6 in the morning when I get here for inventory, and he’s sweeping the whole lot,” Park told King5.com. “He’s really in-tune with the community so we lost a good member.”
Cyndi Sperling, Jered’s wife, said in a statement emailed to the News-Sentinel that the couple moved to Kent in August 2017. The couple managed the storage facility together, she said, and wanted to make a difference in a community that she said “looked a little rough.”
“He was the bravest person I know and always made me feel a little braver, so we dug right in. He immediately took to cleaning up our little storage village,” said Cyndi. “He took great pride in redoing the landscaping, speaking with the homeless, making sure new roofs and gutters went along smoothly, negotiating with contractors and pulling down trees.”
Jered also worked on installing better lighting so their tenants would feel safer, Cyndi said, purchasing better carts if needed and installing air fresheners in the hallways when their tenants complained.
“He stopped and talked to all of our tenants when they were here,” Cyndi said. “He treated people like family and told them to never hesitate to come to him if they ever needed anything, and he had their back.”
Although she is still mourning the loss of her husband, Cyndi encourages people to treat one another with the same kindness, compassion and respect that Jered did. She described Jered as “a leader, a protector and fiercely devoted to his family and friends.”
“I feel all the things that made Jered, Jered will always be around me. I know I will live out the rest of my life so grateful to love and be loved by this incredible man,” Cyndi said. “I will strive to make him proud and be like him, and I hope you hear this and do the same.”