Martin Joseph Joey Hawk. JD Red Blazer. One can determine how you knew him based on the name used. One thing is for sure, to know Joey was to love him. To borrow his own words, “Keep it 100” - Joey was the best at keeping it 100. He was the guy who always showed up 100% as his true self. No pretending to be anyone or anything other than what he believed in and stood for every day of his 61 years. He honored family and friendships. His relationships ran deep. Joey had a unique love of music and could often be found listening to Frankie Beverly and Maze, Loose Ends, or the Whispers. If you needed an uplifting word, call Joey. Needed encouragement, call Joey. Need a party? Well, JD would already be parked outside waiting. He was the party. As we struggle with the sudden manner with which he was called home, let us remember Martin Joseph DeCoux, the consummate son, brother, husband, father, and friend.
Martin Joseph “JD” DeCoux, III was the second child born on September 8, 1958 in Spokane, Washington to the late Martin J. DeCoux, Jr. and Gladys “G” DeCoux. The couple brought their first-born son home to complete their family with JD’s sister, Renee, 17 months his senior. In middle school, the parenting team was joined lovingly by G’s husband, Danny Daniels. JD graduated from Cleveland High School in 1977 where he was popular as a major contributor to the varsity basketball team. JD had Renee, Debra Jean, and cousin Steph to look out for around the halls of Cleveland. After graduating, JD went on to play basketball at Spokane Falls Community College. After college, JD began what would become a 38-year aerospace career as a machinist at Boeing. An avid athlete, not only did JD join the Boeing basketball league, but orchestrated the beginning of his own team in the league, the Boeing All Stars. The All Stars were the top-seated team in the Boeing Basketball League between the years of 1989 and 1992 and coached at times by two of JD’s best friends, Rick Petry and Peter Bangs. In 1995, JD was chosen, along with six other top Boeing athletes, to travel to Poland to compete against Boeing’s Polish team. His experience with the Boeing league sparked JD to establish the first and only Boeing Basketball Camp for Kids, providing fitness and leadership skills to community youth.
JD’s second marriage was a union that produced JD’s pride and joy - his son, Joshua. Joshua truly embodies everything we love and all that is good in JD. He would often taut, “He’s a foot-er!” in reference to Joshua’s hereditary height. Ten years ago, JD met the love of his life, Sherri Bell DeCoux. “Third time is a charm,” JD would say as he gushed over his beautiful wife and life partner. Sherri fell for his infectious smile and she was equally revered as his partner in love, life, and on the dance floor.
JD is preceded in death by his parents, Martin DeCoux, Jr., Gladys DeCoux, and Danny Daniels; grandparents, Tolmon and Earsie Gibson; brothers Michael DeCoux and Patrick Daniels; uncles, Tolmon Gibson, Jr. (Anna), Oliver Gibson (Jessie), and Melvin Carter; and aunts Gearlene Jackson, and Pan A. Sparrow.
JD is survived by his wife and soulmate, Sherri Bell DeCoux; son, Joshua Brinton; loving siblings Renée DeCoux, Marcus DeCoux (Chris), Michelle Hampton-Miller (Marcus), Ted Daniels (Rosie) and Ina Daniels Patton (Marvcus); uncles Darryl Gibson (Marsha), Terry L. Gibson (Cynthia), and Isaac Carter; aunts Ina J. Gobert, Jean Bishop (Autry), and Rita Bell; former spouses Teresa Jellison and Laurie Brinton. JD also leaves behind a host of nephews, nieces, cousins, and friends with whom he has special and meaningful relationships.
JD passed away peacefully on Tuesday, June 23, 2020 with Sherri, Renee, and Ina by his side. True to his personality in life, there were also about 15 family members and friends in the room via video conference. Music was played and favorite stories were shared. Family and friends from all walks of life released JD from this life, essentially giving him the permission to continue his transition to Heaven.