There are some moments in life that make you reflect on your own mortality —celebrating the life and death of Demitris “Dee” McGee is one of them. We lost Dee after only four months of freedom. I can only be grateful that at least he tasted freedom. He was able to touch his wife and family, even though briefly.
I remember when we all piled around his cell door the night before he paroled. We wished him the best and gave him our love. When someone you have spent so much time with paroles, it’s like they are taking a part of you back out to the streets. You hope for their success.
Dee had dreams to open a transitional home for teens. He was to start a job as a youth counselor at BOSS of Oakland, a transitional home for boys. Dee did the work before he was released and received more than 25 certificates.
Now, Dee, we are thumbing through your obituary and missing you. I am proud to see how many San Quentin alumni [returning citizens] attended your day of rest; that speaks volumes of the people you touched both inside and out.
Here are some words from family and friends:
“My Brother in Christ “CD” Cool Demitris: Words can’t express the shock that instantly turned to sorrow when my wife told me you passed away,” reflected Corey Willis, incarcerated friend. “Though we knew each other for decades, the four years we were roommates, getting on each other’s nerves, we grew close to each other. You became more like a brother than a homie. We ate together, prayed together, and shared each other’s ambitions. I thank God for the time I did get to spend with you and trust I’m gonna do all I said I’m gonna do, Jack. Rest well, Bro. I’ll see you when I get there.”
Dee’s niece, Yo, added, “I can’t wrap my mind around how you left when I was four years old, and when you came back, we only had four months with you. Although you made sure I knew how you were doing your time away, I was excited to know you outside those walls. I’ll miss our daily ‘good morning’ texts and you calling to see how my day was going. I didn’t have the opportunity to tell you, but I appreciate those little things. I love you forever.”
Kevin Sample, Dee’s former cellmate, concluded, “Prayer to the McGee family: I pray that God would open to you the place of good memories and turn your sorrow into serenity. I pray that according to His divine purpose and plans, by His grace and goodness, in His way and His will, that God plants in you His peace and heals your pain.”
Demitris leaves his cherished wife, Tammy; his daughter, Danielle; two step-daughters and a host of grandchildren, family and friends. Rest in Power, Bro.