Chester E. Jay

December 20, 1951September 28, 2019
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Chester E. Jay passed away on Saturday, September 28, 2019, at his home in Newbury Park, California. He was 67 years old.

Chester was born December 20, 1951, in Bridgeport, Nebraska to Chester Vincent Jay and Charlotte Ruby Kepler Jay. He was the youngest sibling of five including his brother Richard “Dick” and his sisters Meredith “Merdie”, Irene, and his only surviving sibling Agnes “Tottie” Abeyta. He spent his childhood in Nebraska and California, where he graduated from Excelsior High School in Norwalk. He spent the past 37 years living in Newbury Park, California.

Chester began his career as a rough carpenter and became very well-known and respected by many in the industry. In 1989 Chester founded C&H Construction, which he grew into a thriving family business that continues today.

Chester’s passion was his family. He loved planning holiday trips to his vacation home at the river, where family and friends were always welcome. He believed that more was merrier and he was always the life of the party.

He enjoyed golf with his sons and colleagues as well as rides on his Harley. Harley Davidson was a brand name in his household.

Chester’s favorite holiday was Christmas. Every year he decorated his yard so elaborately that it rivaled most theme parks. On any given December evening, a steady stream of traffic could be seen cruising the street in front of his home in anticipation of the spectacle they were to experience that year. The inside of his home was also a Christmas wonderland, created with love by his talented wife. They were often referred to as Mr. and Mrs. Claus.

Chester also enjoyed April Fool’s Day very much. His family and friends were always on the look-out for his pranks on this day.

Mostly though, Chester was a mentor and a confidant to many. He was always available with an ear, a nudge, a joke, some honest advice and of course a shot of Jack Daniels when needed. He touched many lives and possessed a charisma and sparkle that most are not gifted.

He is survived by his wife Debra Jay, his children Jeffrey & Lauren Jay, Brandon & Courtney Jay, Brieanna Jay, Jarrod & Mary Tiner and Aaron & Tina Tiner. He left a legacy of ten grandchildren Ashley, Ryan, Jackson, Kolton, Austin, Justin, Easton, Samantha, Nicholas, Noah and his beloved dogs Harley and Bailey.

He was bigger than life and truly one of a kind. He will be missed by so many.

A funeral service will be held on Saturday, October 12, 2019, at 11:00 a.m. at the Newbury Park First Christian Church, 801 Knollwood Drive, Newbury Park, California. A celebration of his life is to follow the service at 868 Patriot Drive, Suite A, Moorpark, California.


  • Memorial Service Saturday, October 12, 2019


Chester E. Jay

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Carly Taylor

October 18, 2019

Chester was an amazing friend to my parents and also so wonderful to my sister and I. I remember trips to the river with him, Deb, and their family and always having so much fun. He was always at our family and friend gatherings with a big smile having the best time. What an incredible person. I will miss him.

Jarrod Tiner

October 18, 2019

I do not have the words to describe all that you meant to me and my family, it’s not often you meet someone as genuine or real as you were. I may not have always liked what you told me but I always respected the way you said it. You helped me to be tough when things were hard and to be optimistic in times of despair, you showed me a work ethic unparalleled by most, I have the utmost respect for you. Thank you for loving and treating me like a son, thank you for treating my mom like a princess, thank you for never turning your back on me or judging me, thank you for so many great memories with a great family and most of all thank you so much for letting it be so easy to call you Dad. Until we meet again I love you always
Your son Jarrod

Mary Tiner

October 17, 2019

I only recently got to be your daughter, but from the moment I met you, I knew I was your family. You welcomed Justin, Easton and I into the family with open arms and a loving heart. You made every person you met feel special, loved and important. Your hard work, integrity and respect for others are qualities that I hope my sons will remember and mirror throughout life. Your personality drew everyone in and kept us wanting more. I could listen to your stories all day, I could hug you forever...there will never be another like you Chet.
Our hearts are aching in your absence, but we are so grateful for the time we had with you. Justin, Easton and I will miss your smile, your sense of humor and the amazing hugs you always gave us. We will forever admire the man that you were.
Thank you for making me a part of your family, for giving me brothers, sisters, a niece and nephews. We love our family and we will continue on with tradition, always keeping you in our hearts. Until we meet again, Rest In Peace. We love you.

Jen Rice

October 13, 2019

Dear Chet,

You left this world too soon. We are heartbroken, mad and sad. I am mad I didn't stop by more often, sad there wont be "next time" but I am blessed that I was loved by you and your family.

Everyone talked about how much of a "manly man" you were yesterday. How tough you were. I remember your soft side. You didn't show your HUGE HEART until I earned that privilege but over the past 20+ years you have loved me unconditionally. I used to love to find you sitting alone and have you give me your words of wisdom "what are you doing with that jackass" was something you often asked me. I would talk to you about Brie and let you know that your tough love is helping her. I remember you telling me about the boys and the pennies you would pay them with they were kids for every nail that they took out of a roof.

Thank you for hosting so many birthday parties, rad Super Bowl parties and creating life long memories when you would open up your home to ALL of us in Laughlin. You brought so much love together. You always worked so hard and played just as hard. I admired your drive for success and you measured success by your families love and time together.

I see so much of you in your kids. Jeff and Brandon are just as quiet with the biggest hearts. Brie is tough and strong like you. She says it with no filter, just as you would.

Deb, I remember when Chet would sneak off on the weekends to get his oil changed. When he met you his heart became complete. He loved you the way we all want to be loved.......completely and purely. I am grateful that we spent so much time together when you two planned your wedding. I am so happy that you two found each other.

Deb, Jeff, Brandon and Brie......Chet is that chill you feel for no reason, that bird that comes by for no reason. He is surrounding you all.

Much love, sadness and gratitude for the Jay Family

Love, Jen Platt Rice

Charlene Henke

October 13, 2019

I remember how Uncle Chester always made me feel accepted. I could just be myself and that was good enough. I will miss Uncle Chester and love him always.

Terri and Doug Robinson

October 12, 2019

Chester, you will be missed here at the desert isle community in BHC. We were like brother and sister we argued and ended with a hug. A man with the biggest heart.. You always kept it real and never pulled any punches you will be greatly missed by Doug and I. The most thing I will remember is you always dressed like Johnny Cash with your red solo cup in hand. We extend our support and love to Deb and the whole family.

Terri Hamstra Vase

October 12, 2019

You have my Deepest Sympathy on the the loss of Chester, I am so sorry. I knew Chester while growing up in Norwalk attending Elementary, Junior High and High School together. He always seemed more mature than the other boys,, he was so kind and always had a sweet smile for you. Debbie I know there is little I can say to console you but Please know I hold you close to my heart.
Thoughts and prayers
Love Terri

Janelle Clark

October 10, 2019


My mentor, my confidant, my friend.

Who knew that when I met you as a bright-eyed, eager young girl, that we would be here today, thirty years later. Who knew that out of that business relationship would grow an incredible lifetime friendship, trust, and respect.

Thank you for your many teachings. I will look to them every day to continue the business you founded. When faced with hard decisions, I will ask myself, “What would Chester do?” I will do my very best every day to continue, and to make you proud.

C&H will forever have an angel to look over us and guide us, and I do not doubt that you will be hovering!

I will remember with a smile and a tear, your favorite story…something about the gutter and a porcupine 😉, and will be thankful that you saw promise in me.

Beyond the business though, thank you for sharing your life and family with me. Thank you for helping to shape me into the woman I am today. Thank you for your constructive candor and honest advise. Thank you for your comfort when life got messy. Thank you for believing in me all those years ago.

I am going to miss you beyond measure, but I find comfort knowing that this is not goodbye, but see you later. Besides, I can’t wait to find out if there is Jack Daniels in heaven. Be good up there.

I love you,

Rachel Janisse

October 9, 2019

I only had the pleasure of knowing you for a little while, but what an impression you left on my heart. There really are no words to express the hole you've left in all of us. I'll miss your phone calls at the end of the work day, I'll miss you making fun of me, I'll miss your laugh. The office feels so strange without you, I keep finding myself waiting for you to walk through the door. We have your cowboy movies on all day long. I wish we had more time with you. Thank you for leaving me with so many funny stories and memories. Your spirit was truly one of a kind. You will be greatly missed <3 I love you

Lauren Jay

October 9, 2019

Chester came into my life when I was 22 years old. Young, carefree and thankfully not easily offended. It was his mission to get a rise out of me as often as possible and I happily accepted the challenge. Our endless banter was one of my favorite past times. I could listen to that man's deep belly laugh all day long.
The first birthday I ever spent with Chet he told me that Jeff never keeps girlfriends past the age of 24. He said that I had one more year and after that I would be traded in for a younger model! Chet made sure to remind me of that every year thereafter. On my 25th birthday, he made sure that I knew how lucky I was to still be around and that I would for sure be gone by the following year. This went on till well after my 30th birthday and I looked forward to it every year.
Chet, there are so many things about you that I will miss. I am still in shock that you are gone, we were not ready to lose you. I will make you a promise, I promise to take care of your son, he is going to be so lost without you. And I promise your grandsons will know what an amazing man you were. I hope they have even an ounce of the loyalty and integrity that you had. Your memory will carry on and I hope we will all make you proud. Rest In Peace Chet.