Memorial created 10-22-1997
September 3 1981 - August 13 1996
Yvonne's Tribute to Jonathan
TRIBUTE TO JONATHAN DAVID THAIS.
JONATHAN DAVID THAIS 9/3/81
Jonathan was 14 years old, he was going to be a freshman at the Monticello
High School, Monticello,
IL in the fall of 1996. He was excited about high school, he was going to
try out for the football
team. Jonathan was an excellent athlete. He liked baseball, soccer, and
track. His favorite sport was
basketball, since he had never really played football, who knows if he would
have liked it.
liked to roller blade and ride his bicycle. He also liked to torment his
younger brother. Jonathan was
a young man that had a lot of potential. He was so full of life, he always
had a smile, and he liked to
make people laugh. He had a way of poking his mother in the side that would
make her mad. When
he and his dad were building something - Jonathan would move him out of the
way and pick up the
He had a way about him that made you want to be around him.
Jonathan was well liked by everyone - when there was a party at a classmates
house, he would be
called to make sure he was going to be there. He is missed very much.
Jonathan came from a family of seven children, he was next to the youngest,
with four older sisters,
one older brother and one younger brother.
On August 13, 1996, the day of freshman orientation, Jonathan and some of his
friends went to lunch,
and then to a friends house. One of the friends drove a car to another
friends house. There Jonathan,
Richard and Laura (Jonathan's girlfriend) got into Richard's moms boyfriends
car. Richard was also
14, the car had the keys left in it. Jonathan and Richard were in the front,
Laura was in the back.
Jonathan looked at Laura and indicated that she should put her seat belt on.
Which she did. With
Richard driving they took off down the back country roads, the other car was
behind them. Richard
was driving very fast and hit a rise in the road, he lost control of the car
and it hit the ditch and then
went across the road and hit the other ditch flipping end-to-end. The
sheriff figures that Richard was
thrown from the car on one of the first flips. The sun roof was open and he
may have went out that
or the back window because it was also busted out. Jonathan was also thrown
from the car but
towards the end when the car stopped. Neither boy was wearing a seat belt,
the car was equipped
with driver and passenger side airbags. Richard was pronounced dead at the
scene. Laura crawled
out of the back window and got to Jonathan who told her "call my mom".
Jonathan was pronounced
dead several hours later at the hospital. He had numerous injuries.
Jonathan has two sisters that live
out of state, they were not able to go to the hospital to see him, the rest
of Jonathan's family was
there. The church that our parents belong to was called when we first got to
the hospital. We had
two of the pastors there, the youth pastor, and a lot of friends were there
to offer support and prayer.
The hospital was very accommodating - allowing us to spend as much time with
him as possible.
Laura had some very minor injuries.
It was very hard to call Rhonda and Ruth (the sisters that live out of state)
and tell them of Jonathan's
passing. Ruth lives in Kentucky with her boyfriend, they headed home later
that night. Rhonda and
her husband live in California, they were not able to leave until late the
next day arriving early
Monticello is a very small town and has only one funeral home, with the death
of two boys from the
town, the funeral home was going to be very small for two visitations at the
same time. Richards
visitation was at the funeral home, and Jonathans was at the high school gym.
Our family thought
this was appropriate because Jonathan would have spent a lot of time here the
next four years. We
took some of Jonathans sports equipment with us and made collages of pictures
of him growing up,
to show people how Jonathan lived and enjoyed life.
The families had a joint funeral which allowed people that knew both boys to
attend both funerals.
The funeral was also in the gym, the funeral director estimated between 800
and 1000 people attened
the funeral. The funeral was about an hour, because there were two ministers
for Richard and one
for Jonathan. And a few people that said some things about the boys. The
high school awarded both
Jonathan and Richard letters for sports, these were presented to the parents.
A poem was wrote and
read by a classmate during the service about both of the boys.
We don't know why Jonathan was taken from us. We only pray that we will see
him again, when we
all pass away. There is a large void in our lives without Jonathan. For
such a young person, he
touched a lot of lives.
The state police started a program in the fall of 1996 with some of the
Chevrolet dealerships in the
state where they went to area high schools and encouraged students to wear
their seat belts. The car
that Jonathan, Richard and Laura were in was taken around so the kids could
see what happens when
you don't wear your seat belt. There has been a very positive response to
Our family will never be the same, but we go on with our lives. Jonathan's
sister Ruth recently had
a son and Jonathan's brother Brad and his wife recently had a girl. Rhonda
is pregnant now, so our
family is continuing to grow. These additions to our family will only know
Jonathan from the stories
we can tell them and from the pictures we can show to them.
We love you and miss you Jonathan.
Mom, Dad, Esther, Aaron, Yvonne, Gary, Pat, Jennifer, Brad, Lee Ann,
Heather, Gwen, Sierra, Breann, Johanna, Rhonda, Les, Ruth, Jason, and Nicholas
Please sign the guestbook for Jonathan by clicking here
This page has been visited 7723 times
Honor, cherish and share your loved one's story.