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PA bar owner remembered for selflessness

Bonnie Childs said her late husband, Jeff, was really selfless and always looking out for someone else.

“The Capri Club was his extended family,” she said. “He would do things not for himself, but he would do things for many people.”

Jeffrey “Jeff” Peyton Childs, 44, of Port Neches died on Saturday, February 25, at The Medical Center of Southeast Texas, read his obituary. In addition to being a Navy veteran, a major and a retiree from the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, owner of the Capri Club in Port Arthur, he was also instrumental in getting the city’s smoke-free ordinance amended.

Port Arthur City Council voted to change its smoke-free ordinance in early June 2016 after bar owners and patrons said their businesses were hurting financially since the city imposed the new rules governing in May 2016, according to a prior News article.

About 20 people spoke at the meeting, mostly those hoping to sway the Council into amending the smoke-free ordinance to allow smoking in bars.

Their efforts proved successful. By a vote of 6-3, a motion introduced by District 6 Councilman Osman Swati passed.

Swati praised the work of those who labored to get the city’s smoke-free ordinance passed that prohibited smoking in all public buildings, but in the end, it was the business owners’ plight and the loss of taxpayer dollars that changed his and other councilmembers’ mind.

Since the ordinance went into effect on May 9, numerous businesses contacted him; all complaining their business was suffering.

Bonnie said working in the prison system Jeff saved lives by breaking up fights and riots. He also saved people’s jobs or their insurance by amending the smoking ban because business had gone down and on the verge of shutting down.

“He was always looking out for someone else. It wasn’t fair to put the time and money in an establishment and lose business,” she said.

Jeff was born on November 6, 1972 in Bossier, La.

He enjoyed fishing, hunting, was an avid Saints football fan, kept up with political issues and music.

In addition to his wife, he leaves behind his parents, his grandmother, and his children.

Bonnie said she is hanging in there. She added that it is “crazy” a young man Jeff’s age should suddenly die.

She plans to keep the Capri Club opened, however, since Jeff put his everything into the club.

David Ball: 409-721-2427