Jeff Yakovich Obituary, Death – After a valiant battle with a protracted disease that he had been battling for some time, Jeffrey J. Yakovich, age 69, of Vermilion, Ohio, passed away in a peaceful manner on Friday, June 30, 2023 at the Richard E. Jacobs Health Centre at the Cleveland Clinic. He was the son of Joseph Yakovich and Rosemarie Yakovich, both of Lorain, and was born on April 9, 1954. In 1972, he received his diploma from Lorain Admiral King High School, and then in 1974, he attended Bowling Green State University, where he earned his Bachelor of Science degree in industrial technology. While attending Bowling Green, Jeff became acquainted with Kathy (Miller), and the two went on to get married in 1977.
Because of Jeff’s personal experiences with an artificial limb, he acquired an interest in orthotics and prosthetics as a result of those experiences. As a means of pursuing this passion of his, he joined in the Orthotics and Prosthetics programme offered by the Northwestern University School of Medicine in Chicago. After completing his master’s degree in orthotics and his residency at the Mary Freebed Rehabilitation Hospital in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Jeff obtained a position as a staff orthotist at the DT Watson Rehabilitation Hospital in Sewickley, Pennsylvania, where he worked for a period of two years. During this time, he was licenced to provide orthotic services in the state of Pennsylvania. In 1982, he conceived up, prepared for, and then presented a proposal for an orthotics and prosthetics programme to be implemented at the Cleveland Clinic.
Following that, he was given the responsibility of establishing the department of orthotics and prosthetics that was just established at that institution. Jeff was afforded a great deal of opportunity for professional fulfilment as a direct result of his leadership, which led to the department’s enormous success. During the course of his professional career, he maintained contacts with the Cleveland Indians, Cleveland Browns, and Cleveland Cavaliers as a member of the medical staffs of all three organisations. As a result, he became known as the “go to orthotics guy” for all three teams. Following the Cavaliers’ journey to the championship in 2016, he was overjoyed to be presented with a ring commemorating the achievement. Jeff was actively involved with the Ohio Chapter of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOP), to the point that he was elected president of that organisation in 1991.