Kevin Bjorn Garst Reese, 58, passed away peacefully at his beloved home surrounded by his family, his books and his cats on January 6th, after a fiercely fought battle with liver cancer. His name, Kevin Bjorn – means “friendly bear”. The people who met Kevin, knew him to be that indeed.
Kevin was born in Chicago IL on July 1, 1964 to Jane and Arvan Reese.
Kevin, his parents and his siblings first lived in Chicago, then moved to Markham, IL, Morristown NJ, and then back to Aurora IL. Kevin was an independent spirit, and promptly moved to New York, survived on his own, and taught himself home renovation and general contracting. He learned carpentry under a well known master carpenter in addition to his life-long study of the trade. He moved back to Chicago in the early 90’s. Kevin’s love for understanding humanity and nature led him to volunteer at the Field Museum. There Kevin met his best friend and supervisor at the time, Rosaura Boone. They were married and lived in South Chicago, where they started their family. Later, they moved their family to Bremerton, WA, and eventually settled in Austin Texas.
Being around Kevin was never boring. He had the Reese Family trait of stirring up trouble, annoying the hell out of everyone, then making them laugh.
His family was a most important part of him. With Rosaura working next to him, they renovated several homes, including their own. He would be found playing video games with his children, encouraging his 3 sons to all become Eagle Scouts, and working with them on the job. His sons are all succeeding because he taught them to work hard, figure out the problem, and be confident in what they want to do.
Kevin had a firm belief in God, and felt that Presence every day. As well as physical health, he knew that spiritual health was also important to becoming a complete person.
As part of that journey, he became a Master Mason, witnessed by his children who are all active in the historic Masonic Austin Lodge #12.
Kevin Reese served local youth as a Boy Scout leader for several years, in Troop 685 as an Assistant Scoutmaster and in the Capital Area Council as a Unit Commissioner.
Kevin created a Cub Scout pack in the Wells Branch Neighborhood which still operates today and helped advise Scouting units in Taylor and in Pflugerville. The Boy Scouts of America and appreciates Kevin’s volunteer work while he ran a busy home repair business.
Kevin is survived by his wife, Rosaura, and his three sons, Thor, Alexander and Jordi, his siblings, Soma Priddle, Arvan Reese III (Hena Mehta), Kathryn Reese (David Ellingsen), Rachel Axtelle (Tom Axtelle) and Jocelyn Reese (Jim Julien). He will also be greatly missed by his 2 cats, Bonnie and Clyde, who were with him when he passed. And will be remembered by a host of loving in-laws, uncles and aunts, cousins, nephews and nieces.
He is predeceased by his parents Jane and Arvan II, his grandparents, Jane and Don, Ruth and Arvan I, and a large group of family and friends, all of whom will be welcoming him to his next level of being.
He wished to be cremated, and a private interment will be held with his family at a later date.
Kevin also was thankful to Dr. Albino, Dr. Patel and Dr. Wang and their staff, who helped so much and were so caring, especially during the past few months. Special thanks to Trinity Hospice for their compassionate guidance.
Funeral mass will be held 10am, Friday, January 27th 2023 at Saint William Catholic Church, 620 Round Rock West Dr., Round Rock, TX 78768. There will be a family visitation after the mass.
A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, January 28 at noon at Wells Branch Community Church 2113 Wells Branch Pkwy #500, Austin, TX 78728. There will be a special dinner to follow, where the family are accepting donations for the boys college funds.
A Memorial Fund has been established for his three children, to continue their education. Visit the fund online at: https://www.gofundme.com/f/kevin-reese-family-memorial-fund
From Kevin’s last story he wrote, as the heroine finished her work and was leaving:
” Hey” he called to her , “Who are you?” and she replied ” It’s Who I AM that’s important, It’s What I AM” And then she was gone, lost in sight to the rising sun.