Joseph “Jay” R. Hein, Jr., 51, passed away on Saturday, Sept. 14, 2019 at his home in Somers, Connecticut surrounded by his loving family. Son of Michael and Maria Burrows, Jay was born on the U.S. Naval Station Sangley Point in Cavite City, Philippines in 1968 before moving to the U.S. and settling in Connecticut. Jay grew up in Enfield and graduated from Enrico Fermi High School in 1986. He worked in several fields—most notably as a machinist—before beginning his 30+ year-long career in the wheelchair industry. In that time, Jay designed, built, and sold customized wheelchairs and seating systems for people throughout Connecticut and Massachusetts for several companies, most recently for National Seating & Mobility.
Jay married Kimberly Thomas-Hein on Dec. 14, 1991 and enjoyed nearly 28 years of happy marriage. They have two children, Michael, of West Hartford, CT and Jamie, of Somers, CT. The family moved to Somers in 2004 and has resided there ever since. Jay is survived by his wife, children, and parents; his sister, Michelle Flynn, her husband, Jason, and nephews, Jameson and Jaxon of Enfield; his brother, Jarren Burrows, his wife, Chelsea, and niece Charlotte of Windsor, his mother-in-law, Laura Thomas, of Enfield; as well as many aunts, uncles, cousins, godchildren, and countless close friends. His predeceased relatives include his grandparents, Ernest and Dorothy Burrows of Windsor Locks; Elvira Barrientos and Jose Camitan of Manila, Philippines, and his father-in-law, Robert Thomas of Enfield.
Jay helped those around him however he could. He spent much of his spare time building and repairing things with friends, especially anything mechanical. Jay’s hobbies included tinkering, fishing, reading, taking road trips, and exploring flea markets. Most of all, he spent every available moment with his family. He will be missed for his wicked, quick-witted humor, his fierce loyalty, his generosity and so much more. It has also long been suspected by his friends and family that Jay is Santa Claus.
Jay was hospitalized on his birthday, June 15, and diagnosed with a brain tumor on Father’s Day. As such, donations may be made in his memory to the Glioblastoma Foundation, P.O. Box 62066 Durham, NC 27715. Funeral services will be held on Saturday, Sept. 21 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at Browne Memorial Funeral Chapels in Enfield, Connecticut.